Aspen Technology Inc., a supplier of enterprise optimization and extended supply-chain solutions for the process industries, announced a software licensing and services agreement with Hercules Inc. Hercules manufactures chemical specialties used in making a variety of products for home, office, and industrial markets. Under the terms of the agreement, Aqualon (one of the six divisions of Hercules) has deployed the Aspen eSupply Chain Suite and the Aspen Manufacturing Suite at corporate headquarters and several U.S. plant sites, with plans to extend implementation worldwide. Aqualon is a leading producer of products that manage the properties of aqueous systems. Aqualon supplies producers of paint and construction materials, as well as oil-field service companies, paper mills, pharmaceutical companies, and makers of oral-hygiene products, cosmetics, dairy, and bakery products. The Aspen eSupply Chain Suite will aide Hercules in its efforts to focus on managing inventory, controlling warehousing and transportation costs, and improving customer service. "Implementing AspenTech solutions within Aqualon is the next step in the Hercules strategy to increase operating efficiencies and to create new growth initiatives," says Matt Sonneveld, vice president of manufacturing at Hercules.