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Date: Melbourne and London, 27 November 2001

BHP Billiton is one of the global resource industry's e-business leaders. Over the past two years the group has implemented customer information and transaction sites, enabled employees to access the Internet at home, and more recently has begun purchasing online.

Since announcing its first foray into e-procurement in October 2000, BHP Billiton has made significant progress towards its goal of being fully e-enabled by 2003.

Several of BHP Billiton's sites and suppliers are now using the Internet to facilitate commercial transactions - either directly or through Quadrem, the Mining and Metals Marketplace (www.quadrem.com).

Over the next 12 months it is planned to e-enable most of the group's remaining sites. To date, technology implementations have been completed at:

  • BHP Billiton Head Office - Melbourne.
  • BHP Billiton/Mitsubishi Alliance (BMA) - Queensland Coal Operations.
  • Escondida Copper Mine - Chile.
  • BHP Billiton Iron Ore is expected to go live in March 2002.

BHP Billiton now has over 200 employees using Internet buying applications for purchasing activities. The group also has 24 suppliers live, completing transactions worth about US$500,000 per week over the Internet - a number that is growing weekly.

Key e-suppliers include Caterpillar dealers in Australia (Hastings Deering) and Chile (Finning), Komatsu and Cummins dealerships in Chile, Detroit Diesel in Chile, and Applied Chemicals, Tubemakers and OneSteel in Australia. All of the suppliers are utilising Quadrem and have a number of options available as to how they receive orders.

In addition, growing numbers of Internet catalogues are becoming available to: BHP Billiton, with three currently being produced in Australia (Corporate Express, Blackwoods and Protector Safety).

Quadrem suppliers have also provided catalogues for Escondida, Hastings Deering and Applied Chemicals. Tubemakers and Bullivants are in the process of preparing catalogues in Australia for BMA, Iron Ore and Petroleum.

BHP Billiton's Internet experience has also extended to online auctions. Following the success of earlier trials on hotels and ferroalloys in Australia, and a recent kerosene auction in South America, BHP Billiton is developing a program to integrate reverse auctions into sourcing processes across a number of its sites.

All auctions have realised savings significantly above expectations.

Moving forward, the successful development of e-business capabilities will enable BHP Billiton to develop even better relationships with all of its customers and suppliers around the world.

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