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Microsoft Supports 'Rare' E-Commerce Solution

Internet services company Rare Medium and Microsoft are teaming up to deliver both B2B and B2C e-commerce solutions based on the RareCSP (Commerce Solutions Provider) product.

The companies reached an agreement by which they will collaborate on solution development, training, marketing, sales and implementations for RareCSP.

Financial arrangements were not disclosed.

The agreement designates Rare Medium as a "premier e-commerce services provider" with whom Microsoft is formalizing a relationship to provide a scaleable reference architecture for the RareCSP e-commerce solution.

RareCSP is an end-to-end B2B and B2C e-commerce-managed solution that enables a business to establish its own trading network within eight to 12 weeks to connect consumers and its distributors, manufacturers and suppliers.

The solution employs the Windows DNA 2000 platform, which was designed for rapid building and deployment of next-generation e-commerce, line-of-business and Web solutions that easily integrate customers with partners and existing applications.

Components of the Windows DNA 2000 platform include Microsoft SQL Server, Commerce Server, BizTalk Server, Applications Center, Host Integration Server, Exchange, Internet Security and Acceleration Server and the Visual Studio development system.

"We are expecting tremendous synergies as we work (with Microsoft) to promote RareCSP as a simple solution for those companies who are looking to reduce their time-to-market and the difficulties often involved in setting up and operating e-commerce storefronts or online trading networks," said Suresh V. Mathews, president and Chief operations officer of Rare Medium.

The RareCSP E-Commerce B2C solution combines transaction processing, product management, accounting and fraud management, distribution and fulfillment, customer service and support, and other functions such as Web site design and development.

The RareCSP Supply Chain B2B solution features Web-enabled electronic communications and reporting, auction and reverse-auction capabilities, access to vertical marketplaces, e-procurement, and network data analysis.

As part of this alliance, Rare Medium said it plans to roll out the RareCSP solution set globally. The initial countries targeted for localization are Japan, Singapore, United Kingdom and Australia.

Both companies will coordinate marketing and sales efforts, including joint marketing funds, co-branded advertisements, direct mail, seminars, conferences and case studies.

Rare Medium's Internet services include development and authoring of business plans and strategies; strategic, creative and technological consulting for Web initiatives; online brand development and management; development of content for broadband and wireless applications; and launches of online commerce-trading exchanges.