By Doug Bartholomew Amazon.com will use software from Manugistics Group Inc., one of the leading providers of supply-chain management systems, to support its ambitious global expansion and operational improvement initiatives. The software will be used to help Amazon.com manage its global trading network, with the goal of creating a more efficient, cost effective flow of goods from the company's suppliers to its customers worldwide. "As a company that continually works to provide the best shopping experience for customers, we sought out a leading provider of eBusiness solutions capable of addressing the scale and complexity of our worldwide operations," says Jeff Wilke, vice president and general manager of operations at Amazon.com. Manugistics' NetWorks Strategy module will be used to create a model of Amazon's fixed and variable costs, varying transportation and supplier lead times, and taking into account global constraints such as tariffs and taxes. The model will be used to create an optimal network that will serve as a blueprint for Amazon's global expansion, including identifying desirable locations worldwide for new distribution centers. Using Manugistics' NetWorks Transport module, Amazon will be able to plan inbound and interfacility shipments to reduce costs and achieve grater control over freight management. The company will be able to automatically tender loads on the Internet, track inbound shipments, pay carriers, allocate freight costs, and run historical reports for improved transportation planning.