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Wimbledon Is An E-Business, Says IBM

The Wimbledon tennis tournament has become an e-business, says IBM, drawing attention to the extensive online merchandising and sophisticated results system being implemented on www.wimbledon.org.

IBM is responsible for all the information systems at this year's Wimbledon, which takes place June 22 - July 5, 1998. The organisers of the tennis championships have worked in tandem with IBM to exploit the potential of electronic business via the tournament's web site. Last year the site had 60 million 'hits' - which was an increase of 450 percent from 1996.

Wimbledon's new electronic store is fitted with IBM's Net.Commerce technology for secure shopping, enabling web visitors to purchase silk ties, shoulder bags, racket back packs, official posters, the Wimbledon Annual, programmes, and official videos.

The central results system, which is called the Championships Information System (CIS), feeds both the Web site and the journalists and broadcasters attending the event in person. Hence, Internet users are able to get direct access to a very comprehensive set of statistics as well as historical information and a guide to all the players. During the event, a NetCam shows exactly what is happening in the grounds, day and night.

IBM sees the Wimbledon web site as an opportunity to showcase its e-business solutions - "the type of solutions that are seen in thousands of companies and organisations around the world." E-business, says IBM, is bringing together customers, vendors, suppliers and employees, "in a way never before possible."