Thermos Serves Up Supply Chain Integration

Manufacturer's retail partners like Wal-Mart, Target to benefit from improved order placement, order tracking and targeted program marketing

Manufacturer's retail partners like Wal-Mart, Target to benefit from improved order placement, order tracking and targeted program marketing

Chicago — May 18, 2004 — Thermos, a global manufacturer of insulated products, said it would deploy Global eXchange Services' solutions to drive end-to-end supply chain process visibility and data synchronization with its worldwide network of retail trading partners.

As part of Thermos' ongoing initiative to eliminate inefficiencies in its supply chain, the manufacturer — whose name is synonymous with lunch boxes, beverage containers and coolers — is meeting the requirements of its major retail partners, including Wal-Mart, Target, Walgreen's, Toys R Us and Sears, with a faster, more customized service for order placement, order tracking and targeted program marketing.

Thermos' distribution network spans the world, comprised of several thousand retail partners in 102 countries. Celebrating its 100-year anniversary this year, Thermos has been at the forefront of innovation, offering its retailers a brand that consumers recognize and trust.

Per the terms of the agreement, Thermos will deploy Global eXchange Services' Enterprise System, a B2B integration solution, and Application Integrator, a mapping and translation tool for electronic data interchange (EDI). The solutions have been coupled with Quick Connect for item data synchronization in order to provide a full platform to support Thermos' strategic real-time B2B collaboration objectives.

"Global eXchange Services will help Thermos drive best-in-class data synchronization, data exchange and EDI, as well as UCCnet standards compliance with our trading partners," said Dr. Alex Huang, chief financial officer of Thermos. "We chose the company as one of our key e-business partners because of its ability to provide us with a complete end-to-end solution that integrates our internal applications, while helping us conduct more efficient business transactions and targeted marketing programs. By continuing to optimize our customer satisfaction and order processing efficiency, we'll continue to develop even deeper relationships within our retailer community."

Thermos recently deployed the Oracle e-Business Suite, for enterprise resource planning (ERP), and the Oracle e-Commerce Gateway. Thermos' agreement with Global eXchange Services adds to the initiative by providing end-to-end supply chain process visibility and data synchronization between the retailer and its largest external trading partners, as well as with UCCnet and other global product registry services.

Global eXchange Services' Enterprise System is a multi-purpose integration broker that links diverse business applications. It handles messaging between an organization's external business partners and across internal applications, regardless of data format. Application Integrator is a mapping and translation tool for exchanging business documents in different electronic formats with trading partners or internal applications.

Enterprise System's modular architecture is powered by a message-routing engine that supports XML, all major EDI standards and proprietary formats. The solution also has an intelligent adapter to link with Thermos' Oracle ERP system in order to deliver a single system for auditing and tracking transactions, provide business information flows and automate system administration tasks.

Thermos is also using Global eXchange Services Quick Connect, which the provider said is a data synchronization solution to synchronize item information with retail trading partners through UCCnet services. Quick Connect also provides flexible data import capabilities, data staging, comprehensive workflow options, a Web-based user interface, and pre-built support for UCCnet data attributes and associated compliance validations.

Operating a B2B e-commerce network, Global eXchange Services manages 1 billion transactions annually for more than 30,000 customers around the world. Thermos adds to the provider's list of manufacturing and retailing customers that include Target, Costco, Liz Claiborne, JC Penney, Eastman Kodak, DaimlerChrysler and Consignia.