The Internet has been viewed as an opportunity for small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to efficiently compete in the global arena with their larger counterparts by overcoming distance and size. However, research has shown that actual uptake of Internet e-commerce by SMEs has been lagging behind that of larger companies. Fearing a growing digital divide between large companies and SMEs, some governments have taken specific measures to encourage SME participation in ecommerce. One of the more direct government initiatives to hasten the progression of SMEs on the e-commerce adoption curve is the creation, sponsorship and management of regional Internet trading platforms for these enterprises. Such a move is predicated on the belief that these platforms will offer SMEs a low-cost introduction to participation in Internet trading platforms without the need for significant technology investments, allowing them to reap benefits like lower costs, improved customer service and new levels of innovation through knowledge-sharing.
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/denise_gengatharen/9/