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ebXML Messaging Interoperability Pilot

ebXML Messaging Interoperability Pilot Garners Cross Industry Support

Initiative draws support from Global Retail and Automotive Industries

Austin, TX, USA. November 27, 2001.

Drummond Group Inc. (DGI), a leading interoperability conformance consultancy, officially announced the launch of the ebXML Messaging Interoperability pilot. The goal of the pilot, slated to run from October 2001 through February 2002, is to demonstrate the exchange of ebXML Messaging and to produce the first group of interoperable off-the-shelf products for these supporting industry groups Global Commerce Initiative and the Standards for Technology in Automotive Retail.

Pilot participants include these leading software vendors bTrade, inc., Cyclone Commerce, Sterling Commerce and Sybase. The pilot uses the DGI Interoperability Conformance Process and is part of the Uniform Code Council s (UCC) Interoperability Conformance Testing Program. Mike DiYeso, the Chief Operating Officer of the UCC said, "In order to compete locally or globally, trading partners must communicate in a clear and common business language. It is crucial that the e-business software solutions that facilitate this communication have the same ability. That is why the UCC is sponsoring this important series of tests. The ebXML messaging pilot and the subsequent tests will ensure that different software offerings can seamlessly work in concert under real world conditions. This interoperability will eliminate costly communication obstacles and enable all trading partners to conduct business more efficiently."

Rik Drummond, Drummond Group Inc. CEO, says, Interoperability in this messaging layer is critical to ensure that all other ebXML components and other industry standards that have endorsed ebXML Messaging, such the Open Applications Group, can also be successful. It is vital that these efforts span cross industries for broader adoption of the specification. Our experience in EDI over the Internet messaging has shown that user driven interoperability testing is critical to adoption of the standard. DGI is excited to set this in motion for ebXML.

Benefits of Interoperability

The Standards for Technology in Automotive Retail (STAR) organization, comprised of companies supporting retail automotive operations, expects to deploy ebXML products that will support their XML messaging needs. We anticipate vendor implementations of ebXML Messaging Services to be interoperable, said Vic Zappia, STAR Chairman, "...and for vendors to demonstrate interoperability by subjecting their product to a formal test regimen. Successful completion of the ebXML Messaging Interoperability Pilot is an example of what vendors should have accomplished when offering their solution to STAR members.

The Global Commerce Initiative (GCI), an organization comprising 40 of the world s leading retailers and manufacturers, has also endorsed the ebXML Messaging standard. It is our principle within the Global Commerce Initiative to test the standards and recommendations we are endorsing, states Peter Jordan, Director IS Strategic Projects Kraft Foods International, Member of the GCI Executive Board and Co-Chair of the Business Process Group. Our XML pilots have clearly shown that messaging systems were not interoperable and this pilot is a big step forward in providing this missing bridge.

Earlier this year, RosettaNet, the high technology industry s leading e-business consortium, announced that future releases of RosettaNet's Implementation Framework (RNIF), which serves as a guide for e-business process development and implementation, will include support for the ebXML Messaging Service Specification. While RosettaNet remains committed to developing business process standards required to support the complex needs of the high tech industry, we also want to realize interoperability across all supply chains. To that end, we see tremendous value in ensuring our vertical supply chain standards are supported by a horizontal, universally accepted messaging service, such as the one developed under the ebXML initiative, said Jennifer Hamilton, RosettaNet CEO.

About ebXML Messaging

ebXML Messaging specifically focuses on the means to transmit a document (payload) from one party to another, possibly via intermediaries. This protocol standardizes the way B2B transactions are transmitted among all sizes of companies from the Large Enterprise (LE) to the Small & Medium Enterprise (SME). ebXML Messaging does not define the business processes or the content of the messages being sent. ebXML Messaging only concerns itself with the secure and reliable transmission of the payload.

Pilot Background

This pilot is planned in three phases of testing.

The current pilot (Phase One) will test the messaging and security issues of ebXML. Use cases from Global Retail and Automotive Retail industries have been used to build the test plans to ensure the developing products are in line with industry needs. All lessons learned are being fed back into the OASIS ebXML Messaging Workgroup and the OASIS Interoperability and Conformance Workgroup to incorporate in future versions of the specification.

Subsequent pilots, in 2002 (Phase Two) and 2003 (Phase Three) are planned which will test additional layers of the ebXML specification along with the ebXML messaging layer. For more information related to this initiative, please contact Beth Morrow,

About Drummond Group Inc.

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

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