RealTime IT News

ECI2 Secures $16 Million in Funding

Start-up eCommerce Industries Inc. (ECI2), a provider of e-commerce solutions for the office products industry, closed on a a $16 million round of venture financing to further develop its technology platform and expand its marketing and sales initiatives.

EC12 is the parent company of Online Office Supplies Company (OOSC) and Internet Office Solutions and Services (IOS2).

New Enterprise Associates (NEA), an international venture capital firm, led this venture investment. Other investors include pcOrder.com Inc., a provider of business-to-business e-commerce technology and content for the computer industry; John Sidgmore, vice chairman of MCI WorldCom and chairman of UUNET Technologies, and several others from the Internet and telecommunications industries.

ECI2 and pcOrder have formed a strategic partnership to create a business-to-business (B2B) e-commerce platform for the office products industry. Together the companies are developing a multi-channel, multi-category e-business solution to streamline the office products industry supply chain.

"The online office products market is exploding, and ECI2 is uniquely positioned to drive that explosion," said Peter Barris, managing general partner at NEA.

"The company's combination of Internet heritage and direct experience as an online office products retailer (through OOSC's S Web-based superstore, onlineofficesupplies.com) is unmatched in the industry."

ECI2's two subsidiaries also will use the investments to fund sales and marketing initiatives. OOSC will launch a national advertising campaign targeting Web portals and other Internet companies. IOS2 will use the funds to build out its infrastructure.

IOS2 was formed as a result of a strategic alliance between ECI2 and United Stationers, North America's largest office products wholesaler.