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PathFinder runs E-Commerce gateway for Flexsys

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Flexsys Rubber Chemicals are the leading manufacturer and supplier of chemicals for rubber processing and related industries. Their worldwide operation has always made extensive use of EDI, interfacing to their European and US MFG/Pro systems. However, the new requirements of the market, and in particular the requirement to use new EDI technologies such as XML alongside the existing transactions, required a review of the Flexsys EDI applications.

Orion Consulting’s PathFinder product was chosen to both replace all the separate existing EDI solutions, and to set up new connections, particularly to the Elemica E-Marketplace. Installed as a global gateway and interfaced to both the US and European MFGPro systems, it is being maintained remotely using PathFinder client technology.

Consultants from Orion assisted with the migration of the existing EDIFACT and ANSI X12 messages from the legacy GENTRAN system to support both logistics and customer service. In addition, the PathFinder translator’s ability to handle XML syntaxes as easily as any other was used to develop messages in the ChemXML message set for exchange with the Elemica e-marketplace, using the existing standard EDI export file formats from MFGPro. These messages were then enveloped and digitally signed to the RosettaNet standard within PathFinder, and then transferred to Elemica using the HTTPS protocol. For infrastructure and security reasons, the actual Comms engine for this transfer and other transfers over the Internet was placed on a separate machine in a DMZ or de-militarised zone located outside the main company Firewall. A secure pipe links the DMZ machine to the main PathFinder server within Flexsys.

Customer Comments

Bill Critchlow, E-Commerce Project Manager, Flexsys Rubber Chemicals Ltd:

"Flexsys has had great success working with Orion and using PathFinder. Our goal was to consolidate several legacy EDI systems into one platform as well as integrating new Internet-based document exchange using SSL/HTTP(S) and FTP. The ease of implementation and the performance of PathFinder allowed us to reach our goals successfully. I highly recommend both Orion and their PathFinder product."

Technical specifications

  • Software used: Orion Consulting PathFinder 2.1
  • Business Application: QAD MFGPro
  • Communications: FTP and HTTPS over Internet and WAN, OFTP over X25
  • Value Added Networks: IBM Information Exchange, GEIS EDI*Express, Elemica
  • EDI messages: ChemXML, EDIFACT, ANSI X12
  • Platform: HP Unix 11

Contact Orion Consulting

"Flexsys has had great success working with Orion and using PathFinder. Our goal was to consolidate several legacy EDI systems into one platform as well as integrating new Internet-based document exchange using SSL/HTTP(S) and FTP. The ease of implementation and the performance of PathFinder allowed us to reach our goals successfully. I highly recommend both Orion and their PathFinder product."
Bill Critchlow, E-Commerce Project Manager, Flexsys Rubber Chemicals Ltd