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Embratel, Vesta Launch Portal

Embratel is moving to become more than just an infrastructure provider in Brazil, teaming with Vesta Technologies to launch the BcomB, an MRO solution among companies.

Embratel wants to change the way it's seen in the industry. From an infrastructure provider company it plans to become a solution provider for the everyday richer Business-to-Business (B2B) sector.

A good evidence of this is the newly launched BcomB, created in a partnership with Vesta Technologies. Basically, BcomB is a portal that makes possible MRO (Maintenance, Repair and Operation) businesses among companies.

The Vesta Business Solutions (VBS) an applications suite that allows companies to create their B2B portals on the Internet allows a company's corporate clients to buy anything from pencils to clips and paper to computers, office furniture and even hire housekeeping and building maintenance services over the Internet.

It is important to note here the shift Embratel is doing, away from its well known niche. According to Elisabete Couto, business director at Embratel, this shift comes from the fact that they realized that, more than an infrastructure company, Embratel needed be aware of the evolution of the Internet as a whole.

"We decided to launch BcomB with a focus on MRO because this is a kind of horizontal portal used by each and every company, regardless of size, kind of business or revenue," Couto said. Big and medium sized companies can afford spending 20% to 30% of their income on MRO," she said.

Founded in 1998, Vesta Technologies was created to develop e-commerce solutions for businesses. Besides creating a consultancy service, the professionals at the company implemented virtual store solutions, a virtual payment system over the Internet, a logistic system and a third one for corporate sales.

Vesta has already developed another kind of B2B portal but this time in the car parts industry. The Snap Pegas portal was created in a partnership with Rodotec, a company that sells car parts for transportation companies, bus companies, etc.

But why a company as big as Embratel would be interested in selling pencils, paper clips and paper? "Because this is a highly profitable sector," says Mauricio Lima, manager of VBS. "Every company, regardless of its size, needs this kind of infrastructure to work."

Besides, he added, this kind of portal serves different sectors. Not disclosing names, Mauricio Lima says Vesta is already discussing with two other big companies about the implementation of this kind of portal, always focusing the B2B excellent business opportunities. Vesta plans to be in at least six different markets besides the MRO and the car parts sectors.

According to him, Embratel's MRO portal which figures he would not disclose will be one of the big portals in this sector in Latin America within one or two years.