This paper discusses the concept of supplier empowerment from the perspective of practitioners and the use of information systems and technologies in empowering suppliers. The paper is based on studies conducted in 18 companies in Europe and the US. Interviews were conducted with supply chain and IT managers in companies operating in automotive, aerospace, electronics, and fast-moving consumer goods industries as well as their suppliers and IT vendors. The interviewees view that it is now getting increasingly more challenging to manage complexities in the upstream compared with downstream market. Looking at it from a supply network perspective, it makes more sense for the entire network if the tasks related to upstream activities are empowered to suppliers. However this would require a high level of trust among supply partners, transparency and visibility of information, and effective and strategic use of information systems and technologies. With effective empowerment of suppliers, companies would be able to better focus on improving the management of downstream market and customers. Use of concepts and technologies such as vendor-managed inventories and supplier portals are common examples of enabling technologies to achieve this.