November 2003



Shell Energy Services, part of Shell Oil, and its technology partners are working together to deliver Shell HomeGenie in early 2004. HomeGenie is a home management system that provides Web-based access to household systems and devices through a broadband connection to the Internet. Users with remote Internet access through a personal computer or cell phone will be able to control lights, heating and cooling systems, and certain appliances, and to monitor areas through wireless cameras or motion sensors. Shell says it is leveraging its brand and technology to create new businesses and products. HomeGenie partners include Sun Microsystems, Motorola Broadband, and Xanboo.



Kline & Co. has expanded the functionality of its website with help from ECNext. The changes will enable online purchasing of the business consulting group's market research studies in whole or in part. Also included is online delivery of the purchased materials and a "reading room" in which users can organize and display their selections. ECNext provides e-commerce applications for market researchers and publishers of business information.

Synygy has created a new subsidiary called Synygy Pharma to focus on providing software and services exclusively to pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies. Synygy already has contracts with 26 drug industry clients to provide enterprise incentive management systems for managing compensation, sales quotas, workforce objectives, and performance reviews. With this existing business base, Synygy Pharma, with 110 employees, already has annual revenues of $25 million and is profitable. However, Synygy is seeking financial and strategic investors in Synygy Pharma to raise $50 million to help fuel further growth.

MDS Pharma Services, part of research services company MDS, is offering an updated version of its Pharma Express system for pharmacology services customers. The new version allows users to have preclinical pharmacology data delivered online in real time. It also offers expanded features including easier navigation, advanced search capabilities, client access to nearly five years of archival data, and self-administration tools. MDS says more than 300 pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies currently use its preclinical pharmacology services. The company also recently introduced an MDS Pharma Express module for clinical trial management.



Omnexus customers and partners have expanded their e-business capabilities through the plastics industry marketplace. Clariant Masterbatches is now using a new electronic ordering system based on Ultralite connectivity technology developed by Omnexus. With the software tool, Clariant is ordering from its U.S. suppliers and plans to extend to orders involving customers and suppliers worldwide. Ultralite allows users who do not have full integration capabilities for companywide enterprise systems to conduct transactions electronically. Separately, DSM Engineering Plastics will use Omnexus technology to support a materials and applications database. Customers can search and compare material property data and applications using the database, which is to be launched this month through DSM's engineering plastics website. And Omnexus' premium news service will begin carrying selected news stories related to the polymers industry from Platts, a division of McGraw-Hill.

Specialchem has launched an online feature for plastics developers and manufacturers wanting to explore the use of special effect pigments. Engelhard is the first participant in the site's special effects gallery, which provides advice and interactive virtual demonstrations of effect pigments. The gallery also offers support in color and special effect selection, use, and formulation, as well as for parts design and sample requests.



E-Business is written by Ann Thayer, who can be reached at


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