General Motors plans to help US dealers save as much as $150 million a year through a new Internet site that will offer discounts on office supplies, equipment and services, the Detroit News said.

Designed and operated by Covisint and Reynolds & Reynolds, the GM Dealer Supply Advantage website, due to be launched on June 24, will be available to GM’s 7,500 Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet, GMC, Pontiac and Oldsmobile dealers, the newspaper said.

The Detroit News said the website would allow dealers to benefit from the considerable purchasing power of the world’s largest car maker and its ability to dictate prices from suppliers – the purchasing department last year spent $58 billion in North America on supplies and services.

According to the Detroit News, GM dealers collectively spend about $1 billion a year on supplies such as office equipment and fax paper and the website was expected to cut their costs by 10 to 15%.

Chrysler launched a similar Web site two years ago, the Detroit News said, adding that the in-house-created site gives top performing dealers access to suppliers such as United Parcel Service, Home Depot and Dell Computer.

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A spokesman told the Detroit News that Chrysler dealers saved about $4.5 million on purchases of over $30 million using the site during 2001.

GM dealers (excluding those for Saturn, Saab, Suzuki and Isuzu) will pay $360 a year to use the Web site and around one-third are expected to sign up initially for the programme, the Detroit News added.