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STEEL24-7 Uses ebXML Messaging

STEEL24-7 Facilitates Online Steel Business with ebXML Messaging Based on the webMethods Integration Platform

Electronic Business XML Standard Enables Steel Buyers and Suppliers to Better Link Systems

Brussels, Belgium; Fairfax, VA, USA. October 14, 2002.

webMethods, Inc., the leading provider of integration software, today announced that STEEL24-7, the e-business platform for the steel industry, has leveraged the webMethods integration platform and its out-of-the-box support for ebXML to provide buyers and suppliers with an open, standards-based architecture for automating the global supply chain. Both STEEL24-7 and webMethods have taken the lead in promoting the adoption of ebXML standards for messaging over the Internet in the steel industry.

STEEL24-7 is a European platform for the steel industry founded by Arcelor, Corus and ThyssenKrupp Steel. The company operates a communications hub for buyers and suppliers in the steel industry. By implementing the webMethods integration platform, STEEL24-7 can automate supply chain processes by enabling buyers and suppliers to seamlessly connect back-end ERP systems and communicate in real time.

Integration with STEEL24-7 offers several benefits to steel buyers and suppliers. STEEL24-7 members have the ability to integrate directly with all of their business partners through a single connection to a neutral, industry- supported hub. This differs considerably from the traditional EDI technology that is typically used in the industry. Through STEEL24-7, buyers and suppliers can extend their EDI technology, thereby reducing the manual labor and high costs of point-to-point integrations.

Furthermore, with the capability to automatically convert messages, STEEL24-7 can support communication between business partners using different messaging standards and formats. In particular, STEEL24-7 can offer translation services between EDI and XML messages, thus giving buyers and suppliers the ability to leverage existing IT investments.

webMethods supports STEEL24-7's vision of becoming the premier global communications hub for the steel industry by providing a comprehensive integration platform that enables a variety of customers, suppliers and partners to streamline business transactions through direct, real-time communication. With the webMethods integration platform, STEEL24-7 can now offer members a solution for rapid and efficient connection to the hub and easy adoption of new message standards and formats.

STEEL24-7 uses the XML and EDIFACT document standards specified by EUROFER, the European Confederation of Iron and Steel Industries, based on the ebXML and UN/CEFACT standardization work. Initially, STEEL24-7 will support the key messages involved in the ordering and delivery business processes. Based on the progress made with EUROFER, further messages and message translation capabilities will be incorporated into the hub infrastructure on an ongoing basis.

"The webMethods integration platform and in particular the out-of-the-box support for ebXML allows us to deploy our messaging service quickly and in a secure and reliable environment. As a result, we can focus on supporting the business needs of our members," said Paul Gourlet, chief technology officer of STEEL24-7.

Jean-Claude Delobel, chief executive officer of the steel hub added, "Being able to quickly and efficiently provide integration services to our members ensures that they can enhance their commercial relationships from the moment they connect through STEEL24-7."

"We are proud to see that STEEL24-7, the leading hub in the steel industry, uses the webMethods integration platform and ebXML standards for the orchestration of complex integrations between buyers and suppliers," said Richard Dobber, sales director, Northern Europe of webMethods, Inc.

About webMethods, Inc.

As the leading independent provider of integration software, webMethods, Inc. delivers the industry's most comprehensive platform for enterprise-wide integration, including complete support for Enterprise Web Services. The webMethods integration platform allows customers to achieve quantifiable R.O.I. by linking business processes, enterprise and legacy applications, databases, Web services and workflows both within and across enterprises. Through this seamless flow of information, companies can reduce costs, create new revenue opportunities, strengthen relationships with customers, substantially increase supply chain efficiencies and streamline internal business processes.

Founded in 1996, webMethods is headquartered in Fairfax, Va., with offices throughout the U.S., Europe and Asia Pacific. webMethods has more than 850 customers worldwide including Global 2000 leaders such as Bank of America, Citibank, Dell, Eastman Chemical, The Ford Motor Company, Grainger, and Motorola. webMethods' strategic partners include Accenture, AMS, BearingPoint, BMC Software, BroadVision, Cap Gemini Ernst & Young, CSC, Deloitte Consulting, EDS, Hewlett-Packard, i2 Technologies, J.D. Edwards, SAP AG and Siebel Systems. More information about the company can be found at

About STEEL24-7

STEEL24-7 is an e-business platform for the steel industry. It is an open, global and independent company, founded by key steel producers, namely Arcelor, Corus and ThyssenKrupp Steel. STEEL24-7 facilitates collaboration between business partners in the steel industry through state of the art technical solutions and innovative services. By offering a unique communications hub for the steel industry, STEEL24-7 wants to increase the Return on Capital Employed for its customers. STEEL24-7 aims to set the standard in steel e-business. More information about the company can be found at

Prepared by Robin Cover for The XML Cover Pages archive. See: "Electronic Business XML Initiative (ebXML)."

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