Archive: February 19, 1999

Archive is a weekly feature that looks back at the top stories from IT Business publications

E-commerce on right path

2/19/1999 – A panel on the now-defunct Internet World Canada

trade show called for more creative ways to put e-commerce on track four years ago.

One IBM spokesperson said the Virgin Islands were making headway, while others called for more federal government encouragement to put Canada to work. A serious impediment, the panel concluded, was the IT skills shortage in Canada.

Since 1999, the situation hasn’t changed that much — other than maybe getting worse. The feds have ramped up investment into broadband development, homegrown e-commerce and government services online, but the skills shortage persists, despite the raft of IT-related layoffs in the last three years.


IT shortage has PeopleSoft wooing firms


The short supply of skilled workers actually had one major vendor farming out some of its support work to consulting agencies. Today, of course, it’s standard practice; entire IT departments are outsourced to the likes of IBM Global Services and EDS, and channel partners are routinely called upon to assist in customer relationships beyond simply supplying equipment.

Shake-up at Beamscope

2/19/1999 – Distributor takes a $16.7-million hit, citing inventory failure, growth issues

The wheels were set in motion in 1999 for the distributor’s fall from grace in 2001, despite assurances that the worst was already over. Persistent problems eventually sent Beamscope into court-appointed receivership. This came after repeated attempts to cut the company down to the quick by closing regional offices and selling off its PC distribution business to Ingram Micro Canada.


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