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URL2Trade Directory Gets Blair's Endorsement

A new book is playing into Prime Minister Tony Blair's efforts to drum up support for e-commerce this week.

Blair is endorsed the URL2Trade Directory, an expensive new book that lists URLs of business resources and explains how to use them.

"URL2Trade Directory is a prime example of the initiative that the Government is looking for in the new information age. We hope it does well," said Tony Blair.

At £395 ($652) for 336 pages of URLs, the directory is clearly aimed at businesses which have not yet discovered the extensive free resources of the Internet. It does, however, come with a CD-ROM version for easy clicking.

Sites listed in the URL2Trade Directory enable companies to market themselves and generate international sales leads. The goods traded can be anything from tractors to lingerie, from chemicals to bananas -- say the book's authors.

Written by Jonathan Cutting, Catherine Bailey, and Richard Sanders, the URL2Trade Directory contains links to 1,388 business resources on the Internet, and takes the user direct to the key pages embedded within each site.

"To date the business-to-consumer side of the Internet - selling goods and financial services for example - has enjoyed the lion's share of the exposure," said Jonathan Cutting.

"We believe this will soon change as e-business generates a revolution of monumental proportions, bringing together buyers and sellers in a super-efficient electronic marketplace. URL2Trade speeds up the process, directing the business user to some of the best business resources on the World Wide Web."

Between them, the authors claim to have 18,000 hours of "business Internet experience." They have assembled a wealth of useful information, although, as many Internet users know, URLs in books can quickly become outdated -- especially if they are embedded URLs which are often subject to rapid change.

Among the resources listed in the book are details of 355 trade sites, giving access to over 300,000 business-to-business trade leads per month, details of 88 official government sites with procurement notices, etc., and access to the details of 378 sites featuring online company databases.