New Year's revolutions

Toby Poston


This New Year, together with the traditional mixed feelings of regret, hope and rejuvenation, many will be...

Toby Poston


This New Year, together with the traditional mixed feelings of regret, hope and rejuvenation, many will be feeling particularly smug.

I am of course talking about the management at many traditional companies who, criticised throughout 1999 and 2000 for sitting in their "Ivory Towers" and not doing enough to drag their companies into the online world, instead chose to watch, listen and learn.

These bosses must have had moments of panic when "pure-play" dotcoms grabbed the headlines and even threatened to usurp their positions as darlings of the Stock Market or investment community. But they stuck to their prudent guns, and this time at least, have been proved right.

They may have missed out on the dotcom revolution, but these well established companies are taking part in the real e-business revolution - one that is seeing supply chain intranets rolled out and multi-channel retail services launched - all of which are having a measurable affect on companies' bottom lines.

This theme runs heavily through the first E-Business Review of 2001. Our feature on e-business metrics explains how rolling out an e-business project does not mean abandoning traditional forms of performance criteria, while our "start-up of the month", home shopping logistics company m-box, is a classic example of a new start-up that is leveraging the offline assets of traditional business partners like Express Dairies and Parcelforce.

On the subject of logistics, did you know that $420bn is spent each year on the paperwork associated with administering global trade? This month we speak to UK based, which is attempting to slash this cost by persuading companies to use Internet based documents instead of couriers, faxes and telegrams.

Finally, to help get you focused back on the job following the festive season, our special report section features a host of experts that have pinpointed some of the key strategies, technologies and companies to watch out for in 2001. But, bearing in mind the 2000 we have just had, please remember that things can change!

This was first published in January 2001



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