If you offer too many products at once though gives people too much choice and expectations of too many people. Best start of with a limited choice of stuff to start with.
I agree, starting out would have to be fairly narrowed down as far as products and wholesalers go since if you had 10 retailers all choosing 10 different items from 10 different wholesalers it would defeat the purpose of bulk purchasing.
I guess there are several different levels here. One would be the purchasing side from the wholesaler and the other would be the distribution side and perhaps a third being the actual sales and marketing.
A p2p type of network for each of those levels could be a huge benefit.
Person A may see an order of 1000 Blue Nikes going through at $20 each with a retail value of $50 and want to do nothing but invest in 100 Nikes paying $2,000.
Person B may have a storage unit with enough room for 100 Blue Nike boxes so he makes his storage and shipping costs available for those 100 Blue Nikes.
Person C may be a retailer with a website that puts Blue Nikes on his website for $50 plus $10 shipping and handling.
A shoe sells, Person A gets $30 (the original $20 plus $10), Person B gets $10 for storing and $10 for shipping and handling, Person C gets $10 for selling the shoe.
Each level can have numbers showing a level of trust and perhaps a competing percentage they are willing to take.
The consumer gets decent prices with lower shipping if there are enough distribution centers spread out across the country with the product.