Gartner Sees Big Global E-Commerce Growth in Q4

Growing Internet use will lead to booming electronic commerce revenue outside the U.S. in this year's fourth quarter, according to projections by Gartner Group.

Worldwide e-commerce revenue in the quarter, which marks the all-important Christmas shopping season, is expected to grow 85.5 per cent to $US19.5 billion from $US10.53 billion in the fourth quarter of 1999, the technology market research company said in a statement issued Friday.

Japan's e-commerce spending will grow 184.8 per cent from the year-earlier quarter, to $US1.31 billion from $US460 million, with the country's share of global spending jumping to 6.7 per cent from just 4.4 per cent a year earlier. Revenue in the rest of the Asia-Pacific region will increase 90.5 per cent over the 1999 quarter and Europe's e-commerce spending will increase 96.4 per cent, Gartner said.

The booming growth in all these markets will outstrip the increase in North America, where fourth-quarter e-commerce revenue is projected to grow 69.9 per cent, to $US10.72 billion from $US6.31 billion in last year's fourth quarter.

Growth will be even greater in the rest of the world outside these main regions, with an expected increase of 189.9 per cent. These other markets will see a total of $US520 million in revenue, up from just $US180 million a year earlier. Collectively they will make up 2.7 per cent of global e-commerce spending, up from 1.7 per cent in the same period last year.

As more consumers outside North America gain Internet access, North America's share of the world's e-commerce revenue will shrink slightly in this year's fourth quarter, to 54.9 per cent from 59.9 per cent in the final quarter of 1999.

Europe, where e-commerce revenue is expected to nearly double to 5.38 billion from 2.74 billion a year earlier, will make up 27.5 per cent of total world revenue, a slight increase from 26 per cent in fourth-quarter of 1999. Asia-Pacific excluding Japan will see revenue of $US1.6 billion, up from $US840 million a year earlier, with the region's share of the world's e-commerce consumption growing slightly to 8.2 per cent, as compared to 8 per cent in the same quarter a year ago.

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