Firms that use the Web to buy goods and services could slash purchasing time and costs by more than 70 per cent, a recent survey suggests. Market researchers, the Aberdeen Group, estimated that by using the Internet to buy goods rather than fax and phone, an average mid-sized company could save up to $2 million per year, equivalent to 70 per cent of its total procurement costs. Aberdeen predicts the e-procurement market will generate over $9 billion in sales by 2003. In 1998, Aberdeen found that only large businesses had begun to use the e-procurement software, but the latest 2000 survey showed that a broader range of firms had adopted the software to buy products online. Aberdeen said that 18 companies, ranging from 10-person consultancies to institutions with 1,000 staff in countries as diverse as France, Germany and the U.S. contributed to the latest survey, compiled in November 2000.