SAQ, Mediagrif Launch B2B EC Market for Wine Industry

[Montreal, CANADA] The SAQ and Mediagrif Interactive Technologies
have announced a joint investment of $10 million to create a B2B e-
commerce marketplace.

The SAQ is a crown corporation whose mandate is to sell alcoholic
beverages. Its retail network has 343 outlets and 204 agencies, plus
9,000 complementary points of sales such as grocery chains and
convenience stores, and 14,000 hotels, restaurants and bars. The SAQ
markets 5,300 products from some 55 countries.

Mediagrif Interactive Technologies is a global leading developer and
operator of vertical business-to-business e-commerce marketplaces.

The new platform will facilitate commercial exchanges between all
players in the wine industry around the world. The new venture is
expected to come on stream in December 2000.

The platform will benefit greatly from the SAQ’s thorough knowledge
of the industry, its privileged contacts with wine producers, and its
expertise in supply methods, transport of goods, and product quality
control.

Mediagrif Interactive Technologies, for its part, brings to this
platform a licence to use its proven technology, in addition to its
operational expertise in developing B2B e-commerce marketplaces.

Initially, the platform will facilitate trade between wine producers
and wholesale distributors — an e-commerce niche that is still
relatively underexploited.

The development target at first will be the main countries’ producers
of wine, including Western Europe which accounts for 70% of
production and world exports.

Later on, producers and distributors from other markets will come on
board, as well as product and service providers, which will give
users a one-stop shopping facility.

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