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Cahners Hospitality Group makes play for e-commerce

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Des Plaines, Ill., and Seattle--Cahners Hospitality Group and Blockbuy Inc. have teamed up to integrate group purchasing and merchandising services into four Cahners' Web sites, including the online versions of its print products, Restaurant and Institutions and Foodservice Equipment & Supplies.Cahners, which is well patched into the nearly $400 billion foodservice industry, says it will offer its readers the opportunity to save on products that will help them run their businesses more profitably. The sites will not promote specific products that Cahners' advertisers hawk, and before any products are posted Cahners will review the information to check for any potential conflicts of interest. Blockbuy's purchasing platform will be integrated into the following Cahners' sites: rimag.com, rimarketplace.com, fesmag.com and supermarketworld.com.Blockbuy's group purchasing allows buyers on the sites to aggregate their buying power with other buyers and generate savings of up to 40% percent on brand name, professional-quality foodservice and hospitality products, Cahners said. The service is being given a six-month trial. If it proves lucrative, Cahners plans to expand it to its other Web sites.
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