RealTime IT News

E-Commerce In Korea Will Touch US$240 Million This Year

"The amount of world trade taking place on the Internet doubles every three months, and Korean companies are only beginning to realise it," said Shim Eun-sub, president of Internet marketplace company Korean Source.

The government-funded Korea Investment Trade Promotion Agency is matching up 6,400 companies with potential buyers worldwide. On a recent visit, Louis Gerstner, chairman of IBM, said e-commerce will grow to a US$5 billion market in Korea by 2001 from an estimated US$240 million this year.

CitiBank To Overhaul Technology for Global Market In Internet Age
Citibank decided to abandon many of the mainframe computer systems it has built at a huge cost in the last decade and create a new retail banking and investment service on the Internet.

The bank hopes the service can help the company achieve its goal of having a billion customers worldwide by 2010.

A year after its debut, in the U.S., the new Internet-based service will be expanded to many of the 100 other countries where Citibank already has operations. Competition comes from companies like E-Trade and more nimble, established companies like Charles Schwab.

(New York Times; October 5, 1998)

Australian Companies May Be "Steamrolled" on Net by U.S. Companies
Australia's retail and financial industries are in danger of being steamrolled by U.S. competition if they did not embrace Internet commerce, according to Craig Mudge, president of Pacific Challenge in Silicon Valley.

"It's only a matter of time before consumers start tapping into cheaper products and financial services overseas just because the U.S. companies have got ahead in using the Internet," he said.

(The Australian; October 5, 1998)

Japanese Securities Company Sells ISP To PSINet
Japan's top security service company, Secom, withdrew from the Internet provider business to concentrate on network security operations such as electronic coding and authentication.

It sold its Tokyo Internet Corporation affiliate to PSINet Japan. The U.S. parent operates subsidiaries in 13 countries.

PSINet Japan is now the country's second-largest Internet provider for corporate customers, following NTT.

(Nihon Keizai Shimbun, Japan; October 2, 1998)

Thai Trade Agency To Launch Web-Enabled EDI Services
Thai agency Trade Siam plans to provide Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) over the Internet at the beginning of next year.

Trade Siam Managing Director Chatchai Pongmala said in future EDI services would be conducted via the Internet. Currently, Trade Siam has two system servers supporting the existing EDI and Internet services for around 200-300 different types of transactions.

(Bangkok Post; September 30, 1998)

AOL Finalises Deals with Australian Web Publishers for Launch
America Online is finalising deals with Australian Internet publishing and e-commerce sites as it counts down to its local launch.

Sites signed up by AOL include the St. George Bank, grocery service Greengrocer.com.au, Travel.com.au, Interflora, Next Publishing's Hyper games magazine, online broking service E*Trade, music site Undercover, movie site Urban Cinefile, Sofcom's searchable TV guide, search engine Excite and the Bureau of Meteorology.

"AOL is recognising the movement of e-commerce into the home," said Bill Gair, Travel.com.au managing director.

(Sydney Morning Herald; September 29, 1998)

JT Telecom Plans to Enter Indian Internet Services Market
JT Telecom, promoted by the JT Mobile consortium, plans to enter mobile trunking and Internet services market.

"We are exploring options in these sectors and we will finalise the plans in a couple of months," according to a JT Mobile official.

JT Telecom has been jointly promoted by United Telecom (31 per cent), Sanmar Group (20 per cent), Telia AB of Sweden (26 per cent), Jasmine Telecom (13 per cent) and Telecom Organisation of Thailand (10 per cent).

(Business Standard, India; September 29, 1998)

Asian E-Commerce Market to Reach $15.6 Billion by Year 2002
Asian countries, including India, will have to put in place the infrastructure e-commerce, according to speakers at the recent two day Asia Internet commerce conference in Thailand.

IDC's senior analyst Pete Hitchen forecast that the 'wired marketplace' was expected to grow from $12.4 billion in 1997 to a whopping $425.7 billion by 2002, in which the U.S. share would be $268.8 billion, European union $55.5 billion, Japan $21.4 billion, and the rest of Asia $15.6 billion.

"Between September 1997 and May 1998 the percentage of top 1000 Asian companies with Web sites grew from 58 to 75," he added.

(Times of India; September 28, 1998)

Compaq to Invest Over $15 Million in Asia-Pacific E-Commerce Initiative
Compaq announced strategic initiatives to migrate channel business to an Internet sales network.

The move covers Compaq's operations in Asia-Pacific countries via an investment of US$15 million over the next five years into an integrated regional call centre to provide sales and technical support to both customers and Compaq resellers.

"In Singapore, within six months, we expect the bulk of our channel business to be transacted on our Web sites," said Wong Heng Chew, managing director of Compaq's Singapore operations.

(Singapore Business Times; September 28, 1998)

Japanese Companies Experiment with Internet Displays--on Fridge Doors
Makers of home appliances and technology companies in Japan are coming up with better ways to bring the Internet into the home.

An "Internet refrigerator" has been developed through joint efforts between an Okayama venture company V-sync Technology and some electronics companies.

"The refrigerator is at the center of daily life," said V-sync Technology's president, Katsuma Fujii. Nearly every household in Japan has a refrigerator that is on 24 hours a day. The device also has a built-in digital camera to work as a videophone.

(Nikkei Weekly, Japan; September 28, 1998)