Wallem, Drew Team to Offer "Total" Solution

Last month, RealMarine Solutions, consist ing of the Wallem Group and Drew Marine, unveiled Total Procurement Solutions (TPS), a low-bandwidth, shipboard electronic procurement system. In effect, TPS is the commercial version of Wallem's in-house procurement system, which during the last five years has handled more than 100,000 transactions. Drew Marine will market TPS globally, as well as provide sales and service through its broad international network of offices.

A Price You Can't Refuse In order to launch TPS into a marketplace that is currently skeptical of ECommerce solutions, given the breaking of E-commerce bubble more than a year ago, TPS is offered free during its validation. "We are offering TPS for customer consideration and review," said Paul DeVivo, vice president and general manager for Drew Marine. "We have a proven, robust application, and, because of our long-term commitment to the industry ...

we believe we have a product and overall concept the industry can utilize to improve efficiency and profitability." Installing the v e s s e 1 - b a s e d, totally data secure TPS appli- cation is easy, as a CD-ROM containing the application is simply copied onto a vessel's PC hard drive. From this application, a vessel, though automated, government-level, encrypted low-bandwidth e-mail, communicates its supply needs to its home office.

The home office, using a web-based application, approves or modifies the communication and directs it to a supplier. This process, which uses government- level security PKI (Public Key Infrastructure) — is a two-key encryption- decryption system that guarantees the integrity as well as the security of the data. "A rigid security system was critical to us," said DeVivo. "We needed to know that our data would be secure, including pricing, before we released the application for commercial review." In stressing the security aspect, which is of paramount importance to the marine industry traditionally, but particularly in light of increased security measures, it was explained that PKI works in much the same way as a safety deposit box, in that two keys or passwords are required to access an account. "People don't realize how vulnerable their e-mail is. Anything you send via email today can easily be read by third parties. We can put a stop to this with Total Procurement Solutions," said Harry Gilbert, director, Wallem. Included with TPS during this initial period are the ISSA and IMPA catalogs. For users who do not have a maritime service provider, Rydex is offering a free, 30-day trial. For additional information on taking part in the free trial, www.maritimereporterinfo.com

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