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Cooperation to speed deployment of private B2B e-marketplaces

EC-Gate and IBM today announced a services and technology agreement to collaborate on providing wireline and wireless private e-marketplace solutions to customers of both companies throughout Europe and North America.

As part of the agreement, EC-Gate will integrate Marketplace Suite, their "out of the box" e-marketplace trading platform with IBM's consulting and systems integration capabilities, e-hosting services and hardware and software products to create a combined offering to medium sized businesses in several selected industries such as construction, food/perishables and food related services.

The joint initiative will offer a full suite of e-business solutions that bring increased efficiencies to client supply chains. Combining the e-marketplace strengths and experience of the two companies will allow customers to bring trading partners together in an online marketplace that automates mission-critical transactions, lowers costs and integrates new functionalities such as wireless access seamlessly with enterprise systems.

"Companies around the world are facing increasing demands for real-time communication and more efficient ways to do business. Wireless is a unique capability that is transforming online marketplaces and the business landscape. Enabling companies to connect with their buyers and suppliers in seamless online communities through mobile devices reduces cost, increases efficiencies, extends market reach and delivers bottom line savings throughout the supply chain," said John Kirby, vice president, IBM Global Wireless e-business Services. "The IBM and EC-Gate agreement will provide integrated, tailored, end to end e-marketplace solutions to customers that support their business needs. This cooperation significantly enhances our capability to deliver a broad suite of wired and wireless products and services offerings allowing companies to get connected quickly, affordably, with low risk and quick time to benefit."

"IBM is an extremely strong partner for EC-Gate and will provide support in every facet of delivering our Marketplace Suite solution to the market, including middleware, systems integration and eHosting," said Sebastian Kuntz, CEO of EC-Gate. "Over a year ago, EC-Gate added wireless capabilities to EC-Bouw, an integrated supply chain for the Dutch construction industry, via Global System for Mobile Communications (GSM). In the second half of this year, EC-Gate, IBM and a number of telcos will roll out a fully operational General Packet Radio Service (GPRS). Customers will be able to unite the power of the Internet with the continuous reach and versatility of wireless communications to do business in real time."

A major part of the companies' agreement will include EC-Gate porting its Marketplace Suite to IBM's broad range of middleware products, and an e-hosting initiative addressing both wireline and wireless access to e-marketplace applications.

The IBM/EC-Gate cooperation represents a significant step towards fulfilling the benefits and value of bringing Internet efficiencies to existing business processes and relationships. By combining the latest technology, industry expertise and e-business experience in both wired and wireless engagements, customers can benefit from the IBM and EC-Gate relationship by quickly implementing secure and scaleable e-marketplace solutions.

About EC-Gate

Established in 1997, EC-Gate builds and hosts business-to-business e-marketplaces for individual companies and entire industries. With dual headquarters in the Netherlands and Canada, EC-Gate offers a wide array of global, scaleable services through an easy-to-use Internet interface. EC-Gate solutions are based on proven, pre-configured components that ensure clients are up and running quickly. A recognized leader in wireless technology, EC-Gate solutions offer seamless wired and wireless access any time, anywhere. For more information, visit the EC-Gate Web site at

About IBM

IBM is the world's largest information technology company, with 80 years of leadership in helping businesses innovate. IBM offers a wide range of services, solutions, and technologies that enable enterprises to take full advantage of the new era of e-business. To extend e-business to wireless e-business, IBM is exploiting its systems integration expertise, web hosting experience, and e-business application capability providing the reliability, scalability, global reach and security businesses need to succeed. IBM can be found on the Web at

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Wynne Morris
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