Compiled By Dave Schafer BOC Gases and Summit Manufacturing LLC have formed an Internet-based alliance to streamline industrial gases supply-chain management. Under the terms of the alliance, BOC will supply two Summit facilities with liquid oxygen, liquid nitrogen, CO 2, cylinder gases, and hardgoods, and provide Internet-based inventory, billing, and logistics services. The two Summit facilities are in West Hazleton, Pa., and Bessemer, Ala. "The significant aspect of this agreement is that it is more than a supply contract, it is an alliance," says Dan Edwards, supplier alliance manager, Summit Manufacturing, a metal manufacturer. "BOC and Summit will work together, using BOC's e-business services to manage inventories and reduce the cost of doing business." BOC is a gases supplier that offers a range of Internet-enabled services including electronic access to quality assurance data, bulk order/billing system, and online plant configurations and process design tools. Steve Sargent, sales representative, special gases, BOC, says his company's Internet knowledge will help Summit reduce the total cost of industrial gases ownership.