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Subject: ebMS Production Use by Hong Kong Major Metro Operator and Office Supplies Vendor

ebMS Production Use by Hong Kong Major Metro Operator and Office
Supplies Vendor

Hong Kong SAR, Peoples Republic of China – September 2, 2003 – Center
for E-Commerce Infrastructure Development (CECID), Department of
Computer Science and Information Systems (CSIS), The University of
Hong Kong (HKU) is pleased to announce that MTR Corporation (MTR), the
major urban metro operator in Hong Kong, and Saggio (Asia Pacific),
have rolled out to production an office supplies e-invoice system
using the open-source ebXML Message Service Handler implementation,
Hermes. Starting with four users at MTR Corporation in the piloting
phases, the e-invoice system is now used by over 300 users
corporate-wide to reconcile account statements and to analyze
purchasing behavior.

Started as a pilot project in March 2002 by CECID, the e-invoice
system deploys ebXML technology to automate business document delivery
from Saggio (Asia Pacific) to MTR and to capture business data into
MTR’s database. Now through the new system, Saggio sends invoices and
monthly statements electronically to MTR. The office supplies vendor
saves not only trees but also delivery cost. More important, it has
enhanced customer relationship through the use of technology without
investing additional resources. For MTR, the statement reconciliation
process can now be conducted electronically with no data re-entry
efforts required, and users can monitor and analyze office supplies
procurement activities with the captured data. The metro operator is
looking into extending the use of this e-invoice system to its other

In production use, this e-invoice system deploys Hermes in its
document transport layer. Hermes is a Message Service Handler (MSH)
implementation that is in compliance with the OASIS ebXML Message
Service (ebMS) V2 Standard. The e-invoice system exploits some of
Hermes’ features such as message packaging, reliable messaging, error
handling, RDBMS persistent storage, SOAP, HTTP and SSL (Secure Socket
Layer) features, to achieve reliability and security in the business
document exchange process.

CECID is now conducting R&D for MTR on a new EAI (Enterprise
Application Integration) project using Web Services technology.

About MTR Corporation (http://www.mtrcorp.com):
Carrying an average 2.3 million passengers each weekday, the MTR has
been confirmed by recent benchmarking studies as one of the world's
finest railways for reliability, customer service and cost efficiency.
Besides railway operations, the Corporation is also actively involved
in the development of key residential and commercial projects above
existing stations and along new line extensions as well as many other
commercial activities associated with the railway including rental of
retail and advertising space, ATM banking facilities and personal
telecommunication services. It also provides consultancy services to
organizations worldwide.

About Saggio (http://www.saggiodirect.com/saggio):
Saggio was the first organization in Asia to build a sizable,
professionally managed office operating supplies and services business
providing multinational companies and government agencies with the
convenience, reliability and competitive pricing, consistent with
effective procurement practices. Saggio's outsourcing and supply chain
management expertise provides a portfolio of products and services to
over 5,000 corporate customers and over 55,000 occasional users in
Hong Kong, Singapore, Taiwan and Malaysia.

About CECID (http://www.cecid.hku.hk):
Established in January 2002, the Center for E-Commerce Infrastructure
Development (CECID) at the University of Hong Kong conducts e-commerce
research and development with the vision of helping organizations
increase their competitiveness in the global economy. CECID develops
e-commerce enabling technologies, participates in important
international e-commerce initiatives, supports e-commerce
standardization for Hong Kong and the Asia Pacific Region, and
transfers e-commerce technology and skills to the community. With
projects primarily funded by the Hong Kong Government’s Innovation and
Technology Commission, CECID is an active member of OASIS and the
ebXML Asia Committee. The Center also collaborates with a number of
lead technology users in the Asia-Pacific Region on turning R&D
results into real-life business applications. CECID’s recent
contributions to the community include its code donation of Hermes and
ebMail to FreebXML (http://www.freebxml.org) and the production of an
in-depth design and management guide on XML Schemas for the Hong Kong

About OASIS (http://www.oasis-open.org):
OASIS (Organization for the Advancement of Structured Information
Standards) is a not-for-profit, global consortium that drives the
development, convergence and adoption of e-business standards. Members
themselves set the OASIS technical agenda, using a lightweight, open
process expressly designed to promote industry consensus and unite
disparate efforts. OASIS produces worldwide standards for security,
Web services, XML conformance, business transactions, electronic
publishing, topic maps and interoperability within and between

About ebXML Asia Committee (http://www.ebxmlasia.org/):
With 24 members from public and private sectors in Asia, the ebXML
Asia Committee is a regional committee jointly initiated by the Korea
Institute for Electronic Commerce (KIEC), the Electronic Commerce
Promotion Council of Japan (ECOM), and the Taipei Computer Association
(TCA). The Committee is mandated to promote ebXML in Asia, to jointly
deal with ebXML work through the cooperation among Asian economies and
to facilitate electronic commerce in the Asian region. Inaugurated in
December 2000, the Committee holds its meeting three times a year and
is open to anyone in the Asian region for participation. The missions
of ebXML Asia Committee are to contribute to the project teams of the
ebXML initiative so that the commercial rules/cultures and Asian
languages can be reflected in the ebXML specifications; to spearhead
the promotion of ebXML implementation in Asia; and to represent the
Asian region for development/maintenance of ebXML specifications in
accordance with the ebXML management procedures.

PR Contacts for Press and Analysts:
Dorris Tai (cwtai@cecid.hku.hk)
Business Manager
Center for E-Commerce Infrastructure Development (CECID)
Dept. of Computer Science & Information Systems
The University of Hong Kong
Tel: +852 2859 2818
Fax: +852 2547 4611

URL: http://www.cecid.hku.hk

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