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36
E-COMMERCE

David + David + David = Goliath

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Small companies are now banding together on the Web for volume discounts on everything from pencils to office chairs to phone service. Here's a sampling of some Web-based aggregate-buying services that can stretch your company's dollar.

What: LONG-DISTANCE SERVICE
Where: www.essential.com
The Goods: Qwest, $0.047 a minute, plus $4.95 a month
The Good News: That's cheaper than the standard Qwest deal of $0.052 a minute, plus $4.95 a month
Secret Weapon: Negotiated discounts

What: 401(K) PLANS
Where: www.demandline.com
The Goods: T. Rowe Price, setup fee of $2,500, plus $20 per employee; $28 per employee annually
The Good News: Demandline customers save as much as 15% on annual administrative costs
Secret Weapon: Reverse auction

What: VEHICLES
Where: www.shop2gether.com
The Goods: Dodge Caravan, $25,986
The Good News: The same car lists for $28,105
Secret Weapon: Negotiated discounts

What: WEB BANNER ADS
Where: www.bcentral.com
The Goods: Major-site banner ads ranging from $50 to $2,000
The Good News: Major sites usually require a minimum purchase of $2,000
Secret Weapon: Bulk buying

Note: These sample prices and products are based on March 2000 listings. Prices will vary.

Last updated: Jun 1, 2000




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