Boral and CSR initiate E-Commerce joint venture


CSR Limited and BoralLimited today announced that they have entered into a joint venture to investigateopportunities to establish a joint e-commerce selling hub across the Australianbuilding and construction industry.

The companies intend to play a lead role in theestablishment of e-business standards to help drive efficiency improvementsacross the industry. The initiative isresponding to the high level of interest from suppliers, builders, contractorsand tradespeople in the application of the Internet for the commercial andresidential sectors of the industry.

Boral and CSR each haveexisting direct relationships with the majority of participants in thecommercial and residential sectors and plan to work with these participants todefine a common approach to the introduction of e-commerce standards.

CSR Managing Director andCEO Peter Kirby said the first stage of the joint venture will be researchingcustomer needs and attitudes towards the use of e-business, and developing abusiness plan for the future.

“Boral and CSR plan toassess a range of e-business tools from Australia, the US and Europe todetermine which will deliver the greatest value to the industry, whilstpreserving the quality and nature of the direct relationships which exist inthe sector. There is a need to ensurethat the tools for Australia reflect the nature of our industry here, wherebymaterials suppliers and customers deal directly with one another. Thiswell-developed supply chain in Australia may be complemented by the e-businesstools of the future,” he said.

Rod Pearse, ManagingDirector and CEO of Boral, said the joint venture was looking at the mosteffective means to enable suppliers, builders, contractors and tradesmen toshare in the benefits of Internet facilitated commerce.

“The joint venture intendsto be a leader in the development of e-commerce in our industry. We plan to work with our respectivecustomers to ensure we continue to meet their needs well into the future,” hesaid.

“Creating long termindustry standards requires careful consideration. There is definitely a lead role for major suppliers to ensurethat this objective is achieved correctly and in the first instance. In this context, we are pleased to beworking with CSR collaboratively and for the long term benefit of theindustry.”

The joint venture intendsto talk to a large cross section of people across all sectors of the buildingand construction industry to ensure industry-wide adoption of the new businesstools. These could include projectcollaboration and management, communication, technical product information,calculating and estimating tools and standardised transacting tools.