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FirstQuote Launches New European B2B Service

Financial information systems provider FirstQuote Monday launched of FirstQuote.net, a new business unit that will provide browser-based investor content to European businesses.

Using the new service, banks and brokerage institutions will now be able to offer their clients both desktop and wireless access to market data, news, analyses, brokerage reports, and other services.

FirstQuote's Chief Executive Officer Neil Gibbons noted that industry analysts are forecasting the B2B sector in Europe alone to be worth nearly $300 billion by 2003.

"FirstQuote.net is uniquely positioned, as an ASP (Application Service Provider) and CSP (Content Service Provider), to offer a complete turnkey solution to businesses seeking a finance-based offering with transactional functionality," said Gibbons.

FirstQuote has joined the European stampede towards wireless services, with wireless making up a key part of the FirstQuote.net offering.

Gibbons commented that the use of wireless solutions, by enhancing delivery of market data and brokerage transactions to investors, was one of the most exciting new business areas. He said this sector would have an estimated 500 million wireless subscribers by the year 2001 and one billion by 2004.

"FirstQuote.net brings these applications to businesses or service providers seeking to add value to their current information offering," said Gibbons.

Among the customers for FirstQuote.net web solutions are Vodafone in Germany with Germany.net, the Pearson Group in France with Les Echos, and Agefi in Switzerland.

To date, over 3,000 financial service companies and investment professionals use FirstQuote solutions. The company, headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland, operates in France, Germany, Benelux and the U.K.