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IFC INVESTS IN INTERNET BASED REMOTE SERVICES COMPANY

WASHINGTON, D.C., November 20, 2000 - The International Finance Corporation is investing to establish a remote services Internet marketplace based in India with an equity investment of US$2 million in Spryance.com, Inc.  Spryance is a business-to-business ("B2B") enterprise that allows companies in industrialized countries to outsource transaction services to companies in emerging markets.  
IFC's investment will help Spryance launch its technology platform and build its operational headquarters in Chennai, India, where software development and outsourcing operations for personalized and skilled transactions will be based.
Spryance, an early mover in the remote services industry, plans to initially target one particular industry segment and then scale out the business more broadly.  Its first target is the medical transcription market in the United States.  Spryance will begin by offering medical transcription services through a web-enabled process that allows trained staff in India to transcribe into written documents the voice recordings that doctors and other medical staff dictate to report on non-acute medical situations.  
The company is developing a technology platform and business model that can be scaled up to allow Spryance to roll out similar services across other vertical markets.  It envisages moving into areas such as medical billing, insurance claims, software design, legal services and call centers.  These services are all natural candidates for processing remote services through a web-based model where there are fragmented groups of buyers and sellers in service industries that require a high degree of personalization. Because professional staff for these specialized services is in short-supply in industrialized countries, the company's e-services platform can help make "spot markets" for on-demand staffing using web-based service delivery.
Through the Internet, Spryance’s business model will increase international trade flows in export services.  Technology will overcome the problems of distance, language and poor communication that previously made the cross-border trade of skilled services very difficult.  The new business will give skilled knowledge workers in India new access to companies in the industrialized world that are in the market for such services delivered in a timely and high quality fashion.
Mr. Mohsen Khalil, the World Bank Group’s Director of the Global Information and Communication Technologies Department, said the initiative could contribute to creating high-skilled jobs in India, directly with Spryance as well as by enhancing India's position as a leading provider of hi-tech-based services. Raj Malhotra, the CEO of Spryance, predicted that the company's electronic platform will help revolutionize the remote services business. Spryance’s vision is to be the one resource for specialized services professionals around the world.
The mission of IFC within the World Bank Group ( www.ifc.org ) is to promote private sector development in developing countries, which will reduce poverty and improve people's lives. IFC finances private sector investments in the developing world, mobilizes capital in the international financial markets and provides technical assistance and advice. The World Bank Group has recently established a Global Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) Department to promote the transfer of information technologies to the developing world. The department focuses on communications networks and Internet infrastructure projects, as these are expected to have a multiplier effect in expanding the use of the Internet in developing countries.
Spryance ( www.spryance.com ) is a U.S.-and India-based company, founded in March 1999, as a neutral website serving the emerging remote services industry.  Spryance.com plans to formally launch its website in early December in Boston. The company can be reached by e-mail at spry_service@spryance.com.
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IFC press releases are available on line at http://www.ifc.org/pressroom