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Scottish entrepreneur says "Bottle of Beer"

E-commerce now includes beer, as well as pizzas

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Scottish entrepreneur Chris Lynas, of Lugton Breweries, said today that it was hard to quantify how many bottles of beer he had sold over the Internet. Lynas, who has the largest independent bottling plant in Scotland, said that his use of IBM's e-commerce software had generated international sales he would not otherwise have had. Lynas said: "Five out of the 22 small breweries in the country [Scotland] use our bottling facilities. Through the Internet, we can now supply beers across the world." He said that he had bought Netbank and other transaction functions from IBM Global Services which cost him £15 a month. "Selling direct is the way forward," he said. "People are worrying about the Euro, but there is going to be Cybercash soon." He said that people could buy, for example, a Spice Girl's album from Arizona and because the UK Customs & Excise did not expect tax on sales under £18 ($30), they could buy it far cheaper than from a UK store with everything included. He estimated the latest Spice Girl's CD would cost something like £8, including Fedex charges. But Lynas said he was unable to quantify the number of extra sales he had generated since IBM helped him out. He said he had seen one of the e-commerce adverts which had made him call IBM and that they sorted out the sophisticated programming involved. Sales of beer across the Internet was only a small part of his company's turnover, said Lugton. IBM was unable to say how many customers it had using its e-commerce software. * IBM said it doubted it would have a problem with its e-commerce logo because it had included the term "e-business" with its logo.

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