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AGRAVIS Sows the Seeds of Efficient Content Management with e-Spirit

High-End Content Management: FirstSpirit manages 40 different websites and integrates a WebSphere portal at AGRAVIS Raiffeisen AG

Dortmund, Germany, June 26, 2009 --( AGRAVIS Raiffeisen AG is making its website fit for the future and in the process has decided on the FirstSpirit Content Management System (CMS) from e-Spirit. The high-end solution will, in the future, manage the content of around 40 different websites for the agricultural trade and service company with a turnover of over 5.8bn euros and more than 4,700 employees. This includes domains such as,, or, which together register around two million visitors annually. The decisive factor in choosing FirstSpirit was the option of an efficient centralised and decentralised content management for present and future intranet and internet projects. The fact that present systems could be integrated, particularly IBM WebSphere, was also important, as well as the system’s future security due to the high scalability of the solution.

Addressing target groups specifically
The basis of the project was the decision to reorganise the online communication in the whole Group. This aims to foreground the individual brands, with the main AGRAVIS site then developing into a purely Group presence with information about the corporation. The various target groups – current and prospective customers, farmers, agricultural Raiffeisen Goods Associations and shareholders – are addressed individually, by making it possible to find the relevant content on the different websites quickly and precisely. “We were looking for a system which would considerably reduce the work required for maintenance and creation of our various websites,” reports Florian Hirtz, Internet Project Manager within AGRAVIS corporate communications, and the man responsible for the implementation of FirstSpirit. A further requirement of the eventual solution was that the employee portal, AGRAVIS Life, which is based on WebSphere, could be incorporated and provided with content. Portal integration is one of e-Spirit’s particular specialties. FirstSpirit is certified with the IBM WebSphere Software seal of approval, and therefore is listed in the IBM WebSphere Portal Business Solutions catalogue as a recognised solution.

Intuitive Usability
Previously, two editors have been responsible at AGRAVIS for ensuring that the content of the different websites was correct. “As a result of the isolated solutions which had accumulated over time, the maintenance required for the various web presences, now numbering over 40, became too high, to the detriment of the speed and efficiency of the customer’s ability to access information,” was Florian Hirtz’s description of the situation. “In future, the content of the internet and the portal will be maintained directly by the departments responsible for it,” adds Thorsten Gralla, Business Intelligence Team Leader at AGRAVIS. This demonstrates the outstanding usability of FirstSpirit and how intuitive it is: employees lacking in comprehensive CMS skills can work in the browser-based WebClient with Easy-Edit function via so-called processing hotspots. Within the realms of their responsibility, they can make changes quickly and easily.

FirstSpirit combines Online and Print
The adoption of FirstSpirit will take place in various project phases: the integration of all 40 websites is planned by the end of 2010. Then the various AGRAVIS print media will also be offered in digital form over FirstSpirit. These include, among others, the customer magazine “AGRAVIS aktuell”, the employee magazine “AGRAVIS intern”, and publications such as “Raiffeisen-Markt Spezial” or “AGRAVIS info”. Furthermore, content can be used directly in the company’s email newsletter. In the medium term, the operative inventory management and administrative service processes are also to be incorporated in the employee portal. “Our vision is to create a platform which develops into the central point of entry for almost all IT applications,” Thorsten Gralla looks ahead.

About e-Spirit
e-Spirit is the manufacturer of FirstSpirit, a content management system (CMS) for companies with high expectations of their solutions. e-Spirit is a reputable, internationally-oriented product supplier with global brands in all sectors.

International clients such as Pentland, Airbus, Trelleborg Sealing Solutions, Commerzbank, OTTO and the Schaeffler Group are all using FirstSpirit as a CMS platform within their IT infrastructure.

FirstSpirit is increasingly becoming the integration platform of choice, replacing existing content management technologies in large businesses.

e-Spirit was founded by former members of the Fraunhofer Institute for Software and System Technology (FhG ISST) in 1999. e-Spirit is headquartered in Dortmund with branch offices in Europe located in London, Zurich, Vienna, Berlin, Cologne, Hamburg, Munich and Frankfurt.

About AGRAVIS Raiffeisen AG
AGRAVIS Raiffeisen AG is a modern agricultural trade and service company with over 5.8bn euros turnover and currently more than 4,700 employees. AGRAVIS Raiffeisen AG’s business focuses lie in the classically agricultural sectors wheat and oilseed, as well as feed, fertiliser, pest management and seeds. Its additional significant activities are in the agricultural technology and energy sectors. Furthermore, a retail association is operated on the Raiffeisen markets. Trade in building materials also has an important economic role. AGRAVIS Raiffeisen AG is the wholesale partner of the primary associations on the ground, which are responsible for the business along with the farmers. In addition to this, AGRAVIS Raiffeisen AG supplies the farmers directly, via subsidiary companies – in regions without primary associations. AGRAVIS Raiffeisen AG works all over large parts of North Rhine-Westphalia as far as Lower Saxony, Saxony-Anhalt and Brandenburg. In addition to this, the AGRAVIS Group has recently started offering its business opportunities and services in Schleswig-Holstein and Mecklenburg-Vorpommern as well. The company’s registered offices are in Hanover and Münster.

Contact Information
Sandra Hoegemann

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