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Farm Company Extends E-Commerce Pact

Milwaukee-based ARI Network Services Inc. said that WILFARM, an independent distributor of agricultural chemicals, has extended the scope of its original contract for development of an electronic commerce network for major retail customers.

WILFARM, based in Gladstone, MO, recently signed a three-year agreement to continue using ARI's network, software, and custom development services. Financial details were not disclosed.

Late last year WILFARM selected ARI, a provider of Internet e-commerce services, to help automate product movement and sales reporting through its WILNETT system serving dealer-customers in more than 300 locations across the Midwest. ARI's Meppel software will be used by dealers to access the network.

ARI's expanded work with WILFARM will include enabling even more dealers to connect to WILNETT in the coming year, as well as adding to the features currently available on the network. New features will include e-mail as well as inventory. The network will also make it possible for WILFARM to provide dealers with electronic invoices.

ARI's Meppel software was developed specifically for electronic commerce applications and simplifies complex electronic data interchange communications between trading partners in an industry. Companies like WILFARM can support the daily maintenance and operation of Meppel remotely, enabling their dealers to transmit sales data with little or no effort.

ARI also builds and manages electronic commerce databases, including electronic parts catalogs and industry-common directories of products, companies and locations.