Switzerland's Zellweger Luwa Group is to buy a 20 per cent stake in a global on-line marketplace for yarns and raw materials for the manufacture of synthetic fibres and fabrics.
The platform is being created together with Ariba, a US-based developer of business-to-business (B2B) platforms.
Also taking a stake in the new B2B platform is Switzerland's Gherzi Textil and Germany's Intex Consulting.
The new Internet based marketplace, known as "Textilio.com", will be the first fully integrated on-line trading market for the global textile industry.
Zellweger said it hopes the new marketplace, which will cut the cost of access to international markets and increase market transparency, will be trading by January 2001.
The site should help industrial players reduce raw material stocks and use available capacities more effectively, and also match traders of textile products and producers.
"Textilio.com" will be headquartered in Pfaffikon, Switzerland, and plans to open subsidiaries in Asia, South America and the United States.
Zellweger is a diversified machinery, engineering and industrial group based in Uster in canton Zurich.
swissinfo with agencies