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B2B's Bad Rep

James J. Cramer

About

Rumors of the Death of the B2B League Aren't Exaggerated

I am very disappointed in your classification of B2B. I could live with your decision to drop the league because everyone has lost interest. I can accept that. But the reasoning behind dropping that column is totally flawed and frankly, in my opinion, shows very muddled thinking.

B2B in the industry parlance is used for companies that develop software/hardware to enable business-to-business commerce. Then within software you have platform companies like

Tibco Software Inc.

(TIBX)

vs. application companies like

Tumbleweed Communications Corp.

(TMWD)

Now let's see how

General Electric

(GE) - Get Report

fits into this category. Well, the simple fact is that it doesn't. They make light bulbs. Yes, they make jet engines. But unless you count the airplanes as hardware that enables business-to-business commerce, GE is not a B2B company. GE is as much a B2B company as it is not a toilet supply company just because of the bulbs it supplies to all the toilets in the world.

Cisco

(CSCO) - Get Report

is a B2B infrastructure company. Much as they would like us to believe otherwise,

Dell

(DELL) - Get Report

is not a B2B company.

Internet Capital Group

(ICGE)

is an honest-to-goodness B2B company because of their stated objective in selecting their portfolio companies. If they were to change that objective, I would drop them in a heartbeat.

I think you are confusing B2B with another overused term, "e-business." Yes, there is no pure "e-business" anymore because all businesses have to find a way to be relevant in this "e" world, but B2B is still a very well defined, clearly articulated area that is there for anyone with the time and inclination to see.

-- Krish Bhargavan

(received 7/17)

That's a WAP

Tero Kuittinen

About

The Future of Wireless Is WAP

I very much enjoyed your series on WAP (Wireless Application Protocol), and saved the articles for future reference and use.

I view WAP as potentially as large a mover as the Internet was seven to eight years ago, and I think there is a lot of money to be won in this field.

It seems that Europe is already very much plugged in, and the U.S. is still asleep on this, but beginning to awaken. However, the question that has been addressed so far, and then only in very generalized, amorphous phrasing, is what the WAPplications for this (or these) devices will be?

I'm an old guy, but I can appreciate the kids all using phones for SMS, but when the economy takes a downturn, so will phone usage for most of the SMS, which I regard as more frivolous than necessary in most instances.

Are there meaningful WAPplications, and I'm not just addressing WML messaging, but actual revenue producing business models?

I know

Deutsche Telekom

(DT) - Get Report

and

The Cable & Wireless Group

(CWP)

are very much involved in this, but I wonder if this is viewed as a very serious business, or another "bandwagon" that we (DT, CWP and many others) have to leap on because they cannot take the risk of being left behind if this juggernaut ever begins to produce an income stream.

Maybe you could address this in one of your future articles. I shall look forward to it. Thank you.

-- Ralph L. Seifer

(received 7/10)