Drives and Controls Magazine

IndustrialVortex folds after financing bid fails

01 July, 2000, a US venture attempting to become the world`s on-line industrial marketplace, has ceased operations after failing to secure a second round of funding. The closure comes less than four months after IndustrialVortex started business. In an announcement posted on the company`s Web site, the founder and chairman Chuck Steinberger expresses "our deepest sorrow to those that believed in us and our vision" was one of several ventures battling to establish themselves as independent, multi-vendor Internet sites through which industrial buyers can place orders with different suppliers. The market is potentially extremely lucrative: a recent study by ARC predicted that on-line sales of automation equipment would be worth $42bn by 2004.

IndustrialVortex had ambitious plans to offer other services such as auctions, requests for quotations, and a low-cost entry to e-commerce for smaller suppliers.

Another e-business site,, has been more successful than IndustrialVortex in raising funding. It has recently attracted $25m of investment from ten leading equipment manufacturers, including Cooper, Cutler-Hammer, Emerson and Siemens. The site, which received most of its original funding from Rockwell, is targeting the electrical products market, starting in North America. It claims to offer more than a million products and more than 300 brands.

Another of Rockwell`s e-ventures,, has notched up sales worth $10m since its launch in April. The site, which sells Dodge and Reliance Electric power transmission, motor and drives products, has 550 registered users who have generated more than 6,500 orders so far.