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RealTime IT News

Food Service Firm Claims $180 Million in E-Business

Palo Alto, CA-based Instill Corp., a provider of electronic commerce and information services for the food service industry, said that $180 million worth of food and supplies were purchased using its e- store online purchasing service in 1997.

This volume represents 2% of the 1997 business-to-business electronic commerce, which totaled $6 billion, according to International Data Corp., a Framingham, MA-based computer and marketing consulting firm.

At its current run rate, the company projects volume of $1 billion in 1998 in food service supplies transactions.

While measures of and predictions about electronic commerce revenue and transactions differ widely from source to source, many observers agree that business-to-business electronic commerce holds more promise than consumer e- commerce transactions.

"The significant volume of business-to-business e-commerce--let alone its potential--doesn't have the visibility of the much lower, but more widely publicized, consumer e-commerce volume," said Mack Tilling, president of Instill. "Yet even now, business-to-business transaction volumes are significantly ahead of consumer volumes."

Privately held Instill's services include e-store, an electronic purchasing service and e-store advantage, a tool to allow operators and distributors to gain insights into chain-wide purchasing trends.