ABNA deploys SonicXQ for open, standards-based integration of disparate enterprise systems
SLOUGH 2 April 2002 - Like other sectors, the farming industry is under intense pressure to connect internal
applications with those of business partners’ in order to remove cost from supply chains, exchange documents
and trade transactions. ABNA, a subsidiary of Associated British Foods PLC (ABF PLC), is the first
organisation in the world to make use of a new messaging technology – SonicXQ™ supplied by Progress Software
– which lowers the cost and complexity of integrating internal systems and connecting with business partners
in an electronic trading hub.
The standards-based messaging solution is being developed by Progress partner, Computer Applications Ltd
(CAL), the leading supplier of Windows and Internet-enabled applications software to the farming industry,
well-known for its Progress-based Compac Gold, Generation and Inteletrade agricultural supply systems.
“SonicXQ will allow ABNA to adopt a single framework for both enterprise application integration (EAI) and
business-to-business (B2B) trading,” said Mysia Benford, IT Director of ABNA. “SonicXQ provides us with an
open, standards- based system to integrate all our disparate enterprise systems within the organisation.”
“Messaging provides the transport system and the glue to integrate many applications together without change
to those applications. It gives the business the freedom of choice and agility to look at deploying “best of
breed” IT solutions on a business case basis within a defined framework which supports both intra and inter
CAL, which has supplied its Compac Gold application to Trident Feeds, one of the ABNA subsidiaries and is one
of the key suppliers behind the First 4 Farming e-trading hub, worked alongside ABNA. “As far as I’m
concerned CAL were able to work to our timescale and we will have the first applications using SonicXQ
messaging live in the next few weeks,” said Ms Benford.
CAL has been a Progress independent software developer since 1994 and has taken advantage of the Progress
architecture to future-proof application development. This approach allows the business logic of an
application to be treated independently of the database and user interface. Coupled with Progress’s OpenEdge
rapid application development tools and its low cost of ownership – recognised by the Aberdeen Group to be
more cost-efficient than either Oracle or Microsoft *, CAL has been able to quickly evolve its applications
for the Internet and today’s business-to-business integration needs. Flexible functionality has attracted, for
example, over 50 per cent of the seed producers to its software, making Progress the dominant technology in
the farming supply industry.
Initially ABNA will use SonicXQ to integrate businesses within ABNA such as Trident Feeds, Allied Grain, Kings
and Fisher Seed and Grains, before extending the technology to other parts of ABA and providing easy
integration to the F4F industry e-trading hub, of which ABNA is a founding partner.
SonicXQ is the first Enterprise Service Bus (ESB) – a new category of intelligent messaging middleware. The
SonicXQ ESB provides ABNA with standards-based integration, using Web services and the J2EE™ Connector
Architecture (JCA) to reliably and securely exchange XML-based documents, such as purchase orders and
invoices, between trading partners. SonicXQ also delivers the distributed processing required to orchestrate
the flow of documents within ABNA’s supply and distribution management system. These services include content
based routing and the process management and transformation services needed to ensure that documents can be
processed to their intended destination. SonicXQ provides a complete and comprehensive integration solution
that can support ABNA’s large-scale distributed system.
ABNA is the agricultural arm of Associated British Foods (ABF), an international food, ingredients and retail
group with annual sales of £ 4.4 billion.
About CAL – http://www.caluk.com
Computer Applications Limited is an integrated business system provider working with customers to deliver both
packaged IT solutions and bespoke developments. The company has extensive experience in the supply and
delivery of Business to Business (B2B) solutions over the Internet and across a wide range of networked
environments, especially to the agricultural supply industry where Compac Gold, Generation and Inteletrade are
the most widely deployed Windows based software packages in the UK marketplace. Tel:+44(0)1257 23101
About Progress Software
Progress Software is a global supplier of software technology and services for developing, deploying,
integrating and managing e-business solutions. Progress Software is a global supplier of software technology
and services for developing, deploying, integrating and managing e-business solutions. The company provides a
comprehensive suite of products that includes application development tools, application servers, the leading
SonicMQ/XQ range for intelligent e-buisness messaging and standards-based integration, and the industry's most
widely used, lowest-cost-of-ownership embedded database.
Progress Software’s partners include more than 2000 independent software vendors (ISVs) and application
service providers (ASPs) who supply annually over $5 billion in Progress®-based applications and related
services. Over 40,000 organisations across more than 100 countries - including 70% of the Fortune 100 - rely
on Progress-based applications. The Progress Company, and Sonic Software are operating companies of Progress
Software Corporation (NASDAQ: PRGS). Sonic Software designs and develops the Sonic range of products in the
USA. In Europe, they are distributed by Progress Software. Progress Software Corporation is headquartered in
Bedford, Mass., and can be reached in the UK at 01753 216300 or on the web at www.progress.com
SonicXQ, SonicMQ and the Sonic Software logo are trademarks or registered trademarks of Sonic Software
Corporation in the United States and other countries. Java and all Java-related marks are trademarks or
registered trademarks of Sun Microsystems, Inc. in the United States and other countries. Any other trademarks
or service marks contained herein are the property of their respective owners.
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