Pact With Orgill Strengthens Egarden's Foothold

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Egarden Inc., a business-to-business e-marketplace operator for the international lawn and garden products industry, said yesterday that it has entered into a long-term e-commerce agreement with the hardware distributor Orgill, considerably strengthening the Internet company's foothold in the $7.5 billion industry.

The agreement calls for Egarden, a subsidiary of U.S. Home & Garden Inc., San Francisco, to provide Orgill's approximately 5,000 dealer/customers with a "dedicated room." It will allow consumers to pick and choose from a selection of more than 50,000 lawn and garden products and outdoor accessories from more than 175 suppliers.

Orgill, which employs more than 1,500 workers, ranks as the fourth-largest hardware distributor in the United States.

"This agreement is a clear win for both companies," said Robert Kassel, CEO of U.S. Home & Garden. "Delivering value-added services in a reliable, efficient Internet environment is important to us, and we are pleased to be offering this to Orgill's customers."

Orgill becomes the latest in a growing number of companies to form long-term alliances with Egarden. The agreement further calls for Egarden to provide Orgill customers with the ability to search multiple suppliers' products simultaneously, order from multiple companies on one consolidated order form, track order status and aggregate reporting capability.

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