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Straightline Offers New e-Enabled Steel Distribution Service in the Michigan, Greater Detroit and Grand Rapids Areas

Backed By U.S. Steel and Offering Instant Quotes, Competitive Prices And On-Time Delivery


Straightline Source, a division of United States Steel Corporation (NYSE: X), America's largest integrated steelmaker, expanded its new electronic procurement and steel distribution service to customers in Detroit, Grand Rapids and most of Michigan, offering instant price quotations, highly competitive pricing and on-time delivery for a wide range of carbon flat-rolled steel products.

Straightline selected this area as its newest service district because of Michigan's large steel-consuming industries. "We're excited to serve Michigan's industrial sector with a more efficient way to buy steel products," said Bob Dryburgh, president of Straightline. "We believe that customers will benefit from our streamlined approach to steel buying that puts them in control of the process."

To further support the needs of customers throughout the Michigan district, Straightline has hired an experienced team of steel industry experts. "Buying steel can be a slow and time-consuming process. Straightline offers a great opportunity for Michigan's large steel buying community to purchase product in a whole new way -- one that is faster, more efficient and will ultimately lower their procurement costs," says District Manager John Favorite, who has more than 20 years of experience marketing and selling steel products.

Launched last October, Straightline's growing online steel distribution business is currently available to manufacturers from northern Florida up through the Great Lakes region. Additional rollouts are being scheduled throughout the year to highly concentrated areas of steel customers across the United States.

In its first four months of business activity, Straightline is experiencing consistent growth each month in terms of customers served and overall tons sold through both spot and contract buys. Over 94 percent of all pricing inquiries have been requested online through StraightQuoteâ„¢ and more than 54 percent of all spot orders placed have been handled electronically through the Web site ( ). Straightline has also gradually increased the number of contract relationships it is serving to complement its rapidly growing spot business. In the last two months Straightline has successfully processed more than 8,000 price inquires electronically, a traditionally time-intensive manual process. "Our progress clearly demonstrates that Straightline is providing value to customers and fulfilling an unsatisfied need in the steel distribution business," commented Mr. Dryburgh.

The Straightline Solution

Straightline manages the entire customer relationship and in doing so takes responsibility for all aspects of the transaction, including order placement, steel sourcing, inventory management, delivery, customer service and claims.

Straightline offers a new mill-direct buying option for processed steel products to manufacturers of all sizes that typically do not buy directly from steel producers. Customers can receive instant price quotations and place orders 24 hours a day, seven days a week at , or by fax or phone with the assistance of knowledgeable customer account managers.

Straightline currently specializes in the sale and distribution of carbon flat-roll steel, including hot roll, cold roll and coated products in slit coil, stock sheets and custom cut-to-length sheets. Customers can order custom processed products or select from a stock of finished goods. All products can be purchased on either a spot or contract basis. Expanded product offerings and processing options will be introduced throughout this year, including select strip mill plate products and precision blanks.

Straightline's Customer Advantage

Straightline is able to reduce a customer's total cost of material acquisition by maximizing efficiencies associated with inventory management, material utilization, logistics, planning and order processing. This increased efficiency means consistently low costs for consumers.

With Straightline, buyers are in control of all steel buying processes, from pricing through delivery. Buyers can choose from pricing options based on a selection of delivery dates and a variety of quantities. Straightline also offers just-in-time delivery, allowing customers to receive product when they need it according to their warehouse schedule. In addition, buyers can track purchases and easily check on the delivery status of orders anytime of the day or night at or by calling Straightline's 24-hour Customer Care Department.

Furthermore, Straightline offers a simple, intuitive and easy-to-use Web interface, with no complicated technology to learn. The entire steel buying process can be completed online in minutes, not hours or days.

Processing Partners

Straightline has assembled a network of local processing partners to hold inventory, perform custom processing as well as logistics partners to deliver finished goods. Processing partners are selected based on rigorous criteria, including ISO certification.

By partnering with Straightline, processors benefit by increasing utilization of their equipment and facilities without the added costs of sales, marketing or inventory, thus improving their overall profitability.

Straightline is expanding its processor network throughout the United States and will be adding minority-owned processing partners soon.

Straightline Registration

Steel buyers who want to join Straightline can register quickly and conveniently at or by calling Straightline Customer Care toll-free at 1-866-252-0488. There are no registration fees. An instantaneous credit verification is completed online in seconds, and buyers are free to make purchases upon approval.

Straightline Source is a division of United States Steel Corporation and specializes in an online distribution business for carbon flat-roll steel to customers of all sizes who do not typically buy steel goods directly from steel producers. With headquarters in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Straightline has a growing staff of 100 employees. Visit Straightline at .


SOURCE: United States Steel Corporation

Contact: Maggie Bray, +1-412-456-4308, or , or
Pattie Sullivan, +1-412-456-4706, or , both of Magnet
Communications, for United States Steel Corporation


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