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Web content company testing B2B waters

Content management software maker Interwoven jumps into the business-to-business pond, launching a new division and unveiling its latest technology.

Content management software maker Interwoven today jumped into the business-to-business pond, launching a new division, unveiling its latest technology, and teaming with two partners.

The Sunnyvale, Calif.-based company's new division will target specialized customer needs in online exchanges and marketplaces, the company said.

The division will enable the company to garner its content management expertise and technologies for business partners in the supply-chain market targeting business-to-business customers. AMR Research estimates that players in the business-to-business industry will conduct $2.7 trillion in transactions in 2004.

As part of its push into the business-to-business space, Interwoven released software tools that allow disparate companies on marketplaces and exchanges to share information across a secure network. The product also lets marketplace partners format and send content to varying audiences and access document-driven transaction data.

As existing marketplaces move beyond the development stage and into actually handling transactions, some are looking to drive more traffic to their sites by offering more than just procurement tools and services. So, they are looking to buy software and services that enable their customers to access online and offline content and share content with sales partners.

"What leading marketplaces have already figured out is that success in B2B is increasingly all about content," Frank Florence, vice president of the newly formed business-to-business division, said in statement.

Interwoven also said today ChipCenter, an online marketplace for electronic components, plans to use Interwoven products to manage its Web site content.

Interwoven also teamed with WebMethods, a provider of business-to-business integration software, to create a new technology package that includes WebMethods' software and Interwoven's content management tools for customers involved in marketplace and exchange ventures.

Wall Street responded well to Interwoven's business-to-business moves. Shares of the company were up $4.38, or just over 6 percent, to $74.50 at the end of regular trading.