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Shell Goes Wireless

Shell Oil Co. has selected IBM as lead integrator for its "e-Station" prototype that will be launched at an undisclosed area next year.

Shell's e-station will leverage IBM expertise and wireless technology to link company-operated retail locations with corporate systems, helping Shell to monitor and improve its retail operations, and to reduce operating costs.

The initial pilot will be conducted among a set of representative convenience stores. The pilot will determine how future technology will be rolled out in several major regions within Shell's global retail business. IBM will deploy technology that will be fundamentally grounded in an open and extensible architecture assuring scalability and compatibility.

The announcement is the third in a series of agreements between Shell Oil or its parent company Royal Dutch/Shell, and IBM this year. It continues IBM's push to help companies integrate wireless technology into their existing e-business infrastructure and extend their products and business processes to non-traditional computing devices.

As part of this most recent deal, IBM Global Services wireless teams will develop an end-to-end infrastructure and support for Internet-based systems. These systems will enable Shell to better manage the operating costs of its retail operations.

The selection of IBM Global Services will provide Shell with greater strategic control over operations and expenses, with significant potential savings for Shell in overall site operating costs if a successful pilot program is rolled out in the United States, said Gus Noojin, president of Shell Oil Products LLC.

"This is a good example of how Shell can leverage technology developed for residential and industrial sectors to improve our retail network operations, and to grow the business here in the United States," Noojin said. "We look forward to a successful prototype."
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