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IT Industry Companies Line Up to Form Partnerships for eConcert Piloting of Business Processes to Align Supply Chain

SANTA ANA, California. June 10, 1999.

There was no shortage of volunteers when the call went out for participants in eConcert -- the implementation phase of RosettaNet, the most advanced partner-to-partner e-business initiative ever undertaken.

In an initiative that will define supply chain transactions using between 75 and 100 standard XML-based partner interface processes (PIPs), or computer-to-computer dialogs, 15 companies have committed resources to four-to-six-month pilot programs that will test processes for updating catalogs and purchasing products.

The announcement Thursday by RosettaNet -- the IT industry consortium comprised of manufacturers, software publishers, distributors, resellers, integrators and end users -- involves implementation of nine PIPs that will eventually comprise e-business production systems.

The selected implementers have formed partnerships of two to six companies to begin pilot implementations. These early adopters recognize the value that RosettaNet's standards bring for themselves, RosettaNet members and every other company in the IT supply chain. Eventually, the entire industry will have the opportunity to take advantage of RosettaNet PIPs, each company in its own timeframe, according to Fadi Chehade, RosettaNet president and CEO.

Purchasing processes currently being piloted consist of computer dialogs relating to requests for pricing information, inventory level, and order status and management of purchase orders. Arrow and Intel have formed one partnership to test purchasing processes, while IBM, Inacom, CHS, Ingram Micro and MicroAge comprise a second group to do the same.

As part of today's rollout, six additional groups of companies have volunteered to implement catalog update scenarios, such as managing product information subscription, distributing new product notification, requesting product information, requesting technical specifications and creating product SKUs.

These partnerships include:

  • Solectron, Marshall, Microsoft and Ingram Micro

  • IBM, MicroAge, American Express, Ingram Micro and CHS

  • Ingram Micro, IBM, Microsoft and Insight

  • IBM, Inacom, Intel and CompUSA

  • Nortel, Ingram Micro, MicroAge, Inacom, Solectron and Toshiba

  • Ingram Micro, Inacom, pcOrder and CompUSA.

In addition to implementing PIPs to align their business processes, each of the eConcert participants have committed to encourage and assist all of their other key supply chain partners to get ready for the production system rollout in February of next year, according to Chehade.

"The implementation phase requires that each company adopt a common part numbering system, product classification code and the RosettaNet dictionary," he said. "Earlier laboratory tests have given us a high level of confidence in the standards, and now we are putting them to work in day-to-day business activities."

As part of the eConcert implementation phase, three milestones were established by the RosettaNet board members regarding the pilot implementation of PIPs by the various company partnerships. The first milestone, when three selected partnerships will have successfully completed the pilot phase of one or more PIPs, is scheduled for June 25, 1999.

Five more partnerships will follow at the second milestone on Aug. 9, 1999. Finally, eConcert will come to fruition on Feb. 2, 2000, when all the eConcert member companies will use PIPs in their everyday production routines.

The complete set of PIPs will address six high-level business activities -- Partner/Product Review, Product Introduction, Order Management, Inventory Management, Marketing Information Management and Service/Support.

The RosettaNet Managing Board now consists of 34 CEOs, CIOs and executives representing global members of the IT supply chain, including American Express, Arrow Electronics, Avnet, CHS Electronics, Cisco Systems, CompUSA, Compaq, Computacenter, Deutsche Financial Services, EDS, Federal Express, GE Information Services, GSA, Hewlett- Packard, IBM, Inacom, Ingram Micro Inc., Insight, Intel, Marshall Industries, MicroAge, Microsoft, Netscape, NEC Technologies, Office Depot, Oracle, pcOrder, SAP AG, Siemens, Solectron, Tech Data, 3Com, Toshiba America Information Systems and United Parcel Service.

About RosettaNet

Founded in 1998, RosettaNet is an independent, self-funded, non-profit consortium dedicated to the development and deployment of standard electronic commerce interfaces to align the processes between IT supply chain partners on a global basis. RosettaNet can be found on the World Wide Web at


Lages & Associates
Sylvia Chansler or Paula Brici Bordigon
Tel: +1 949/453-8080

Prepared by Robin Cover for the The SGML/XML Web Page archive. For other references, see the main database entry. See also the RosettaNet June 10, 1999 press event backgrounder and associated documents.

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