Hence, for the e-Business [email protected], e-business relates both to external and to company internal processes. Our understanding of the term "e-business" is such that it does not only describe external communication and transaction functions, but also relates to flows of information within the company, i.e., between departments, subsidiaries and branches.

The comprehensiveness of the term is captured by IBM's vast study on e-business project. The concept is presented as follows: "E-business is not simply defined as e-commerce transactions. It's about using technology to redefine your business. To succeed, you'll need an infrastructure flexible enough to absorb new technologies, maximize efficiency across your organization, and support business model changes" (http://www-3.ibm.com/e-business/overview/..). As distinct from this, e-commerce will be taken to cover external transactions, and it therefore may be seen as a subgroup of e-business activities (see Figure below).

Figure: Basic concept of "e-business" and "e-commerce"

click to enlarge