From e-commerce to Euro-commerce

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From e-commerce to Euro-commerce

McKinsey Quarterly, 2000 nr 2

Policy relevance:

This article highlights some important aspects of the development of electronic commerce in Europe, mainly by comparing it to the development of electronic commerce in the US. An insight into these developments is relevant in order to be able to take the most appropriate policy decisions.


The main conclusions mentioned in the article are:

  • With the emergence of a single European market and the introduction of the euro, the European sector of the Internet can now come of age;
  • Contrary to the US, where early Internet development was dominated by pure Internet companies, in Europe incumbents have a high chance of beating competition on the Internet;
  • Technological and cultural infrastructures are much more heterogeneous in the EU than in the US;
  • In Europe there is a great variation in the penetration of cable and satellite and in the use of credit cards;
  • As e-commerce in Europe is emerging two years later than in the US, European players have the benefit of hindsight of what succeeded and failed in the US and the technology available now is much more sophisticated than two years ago.

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