RealTime IT News

Japan B2B Market Forecast to Grow 500 Percent by 2005

Japan's B2B market will grow fivefold in the next five years, to 110.6 trillion yen (US$955 billion), while the nation's B2C market will jump 16-fold in 2005, to 13.3 trillion yen (US$115 billion), predicts a new e-commerce survey report.

The survey, covering nearly 400 e-commerce sites, was conducted from September 2000 through January 2001 as a joint project by Accenture (formerly Andersen Consulting), the Japan Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI), and the Electronic Commerce Promotion Council of Japan (ECOM).

The survey report estimates that Japan's B2B market was worth 21.6 trillion yen (US$139 billion) in 2000, a growth of about 60 percent from the previous year.

The report warns, however, of a growing "inter-industrial digital divide" -- a gap between industries that are using B2B e-commerce to their advantage (including the information equipment and automotive-related sectors) and those that are lagging behind (such as the chemical products, office equipment, and energy utilities sectors).

The survey found that three industrial sectors (electronics, information and automotive) accounted for 90 percent of domestic B2B e-commerce in 2000, but forecasts that this ratio will drop to 48 percent in 2005 as other industries increase their online trading.

The survey report estimates the value of Japan's domestic B2C market in 2000 as 824 billion yen (US$7.1 billion), up by 145 percent from 1999.

The report projects that strong development of Japan's domestic B2C e-commerce market will continue, fueled by rapid growth of mobile Internet services and the nascent proliferation of broadband networks.

The survey found that nearly 60 billion yen (US$520 million) of new mobile commerce markets were created in 2000, or about 7 percent of the B2C market.

The report predicts that third-generation mobile telecommunications services (to be launched on a limited scale later this year) will propel the overall mobile commerce market to reach nearly 2.5 trillion yen (US$21.6 billion) in 2005, or 18 percent of the B2C market.

Japan's B2C market via "static" broadband Internet in 2000, meanwhile, is estimated at 765 billion yen (US$6.6 billion). The report forecasts that the rapid spread of broadband access will boost this market segment to 10.9 trillion yen (US$94.2 billion) by 2005.