Whirlpool Taps SEEBURGER to Simplify Trade Customer Integration

Technology to give appliance manufacturer EDI data translation, monitoring and connectivity services

Atlanta — September 9, 2005 — Whirlpool Corp., the manufacturer and marketer of major home appliances, said this week that it will use technology from SEEBURGER to provide a standardized business integration solution for thousands of trade customers that use electronic data interchange (EDI) to automate business transactions.

SEEBURGER adapters embedded in the SAP NetWeaver technology stack will eliminate the need for multiple solutions and also support Whirlpool's global use of the mySAP Business Suite, as well as the company's initiatives to implement the NetWeaver platform.

Whirlpool said that the use of SEEBURGER adapters for data translation and communications will simplify its network architecture, both by allowing Whirlpool to move away from non-SAP-compliant solutions and by eliminating the need to use trade customer integration solutions from different vendors.

In addition, AS2 connectivity services provided by SEEBURGER will aid Whirlpool's efforts to migrate more suppliers and customers to the AS2 standard in order to reduce costs and maximize its investment in global data synchronization through the UCCnet data pool service.

Whirlpool is currently using SAP NetWeaver's master data management (MDM) capabilities to synchronize product item information with UCCnet, the SAP Exchange Infrastructure (SAP XI) to provide integration broker services, and the SEEBURGER AS2 adapter to meet UCCnet's requirement for Internet-based AS2 document exchange. Whirlpool said that data synchronization effort will help it to comply with its trade customers' demands for uniform product information, while also lowering supply chain costs by reducing invoice and product shipment errors.

One of Whirlpool's trade customers recently migrated to the SEEBURGER-based AS2 service with UCCnet connectivity. That customer's system will be used to demonstrate the benefits of AS2 and UCCnet to other trade customers.

We have more than 5,000 trade customers in the United States, but fewer than 20 are using AS2 capabilities today, with the vast majority of our business coming in on EDI over a value-added network, said Thomas Ehrman, director of Global Enablement Services for Whirlpool Corp.'s Global Information Systems. By using SEEBURGER to help move more trade customers to the AS2 communication platform, we expect to see cost reductions with [value-added network (VAN)] elimination while also bringing more suppliers and customers into the UCCnet and AS2 fold.

Whirlpool Corp.'s transition to SEEBURGER's connectivity solution set is part of the first phase of its SAP NetWeaver and SAP XI implementation. The company is using SEEBURGER's SAP consulting services to deploy the adapters, link to UCCnet and configure the message formats required for each trade customer. Whirlpool is scheduled to activate SEEBURGER's EDI Translation adapters later this year.

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