Robert Hegarty
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Reinventing Trading Venues: How AI Can Help Create a More Efficient Market

In this whitepaper shared with Traders Magazine, the Hegarty Group examines how artificial intelligence and machine learning can help traders execute more efficiently.

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January 1, 2000

Cyber Seasonal Dreams

By Stephen Lacey

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Online furniture retailers are able to aggregate information and product in a manner that is palatable to consumers. Many have also begun to incorporate techniques such as interactive design and two-way chat.

The Contenders

Some other companies that could leverage Christmas sales into a 2000 IPO include: Austin, Texas-based, which has raised a total of $41.5 million through venture capitalists led by Benchmark Capital and, in September, inked a marketing agreement with America Online Inc.; Pasadena, Calif.-based and idealab!-backed; HomePortfolio. com, which secured $20 million in July through a group led by Oak Investment Partners; Greenville, S.C.-based;; and

"It's a very big category with high margins," noted Benjamin Burditt, senior vice president with Scripps Ventures, a financial backer of

Beyond just the size of the market, however, the strength of the American economy bodes well for the sector.

"We are taking the position that the home furnishings market is going to be very strong," said ING Barings retail analyst Maureen McGrath, pointing to strong sales of existing home. About 5.2 million existing homes were expected to be sold in 1999, more than a four percent increase over 1998's record total of 4.97 million units, according to the National Association of Realtors. "Within a year of moving into a new house, people generally remodel," McGrath said.