IBM and US Department of Commerce Help Deliver the Goods Worldwide

New e-Marketplace To Help Increase Exports By Small- And Mid-Sized Businesses

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WASHINGTON, DC - 09 Oct 2001: IBM today announced with the U.S. Department of Commerce the official launch of BuyUSA.com, a subscriber-based e-marketplace that links small- and mid-sized businesses in the U.S. with qualified buyers and potential business partners around the world.

The Web site enables U.S. companies, especially small and mid-sized firms, to locate international buyers and distributors for their products. Similarly, businesses located outside the U.S. can view product catalogs and background information on U.S. companies that have been pre-qualified by the Commerce Department's U.S. Commercial Service.

IBM Global Services built and provides Web-hosting for the site. The click- and-mortar service offers online access to Commercial Service trade specialists who can assist buyers and sellers with issues such as regulatory compliance, credit screening, and marketing. U.S. businesses can subscribe to the marketplace for as little as $300 per year.

"BuyUSA.com could substantially increase the number of smaller U.S. firms that export, and this is important news for the U.S. economy," said Maria Cino, Assistant Secretary for the U.S. Commercial Service. "Many more businesses will have the opportunity to succeed because BuyUSA.com will help match buyers and sellers and provide support throughout the entire process."

Curtis Tearte, IBM General Manager, Global Public Sector, said, "This collaboration between the Commerce Department and IBM is an excellent example of how the public and private sectors can successfully join forces to develop innovative, cost-effective technology solutions that can help foster economic development."

Cino added that what makes this online marketplace unique is the worldwide network of trade specialists and offices of Commerce's U.S. Commercial Service. "Standing behind each business relationship and transaction are 1,800 trade professionals in 107 U.S. Export Assistance Centers and 157 posts co-located in U.S. Embassies and Missions in 84 countries worldwide."

IBM Global Services helped to create BuyUSA.com, providing strategic e-business consulting, branding and interactive design, training, application development, systems integration, Web hosting, and maintenance. The marketplace - which is housed in IBM's Raleigh, NC, IBM e-business Hosting Center - uses several IBM technologies and services, including DB2 Universal Database, IBM UNIX-based workstations and Websphere Commerce Suite software.

IBM is the world's largest information technology company, with over 80 years of leadership in helping businesses and governments innovate. IBM creates, develops, and manufactures the industry's most advanced information technologies, including computer systems, software, networking systems, storage devices, and microelectronics. The fastest way to get more information about IBM is through the IBM home page at www.ibm.com.

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