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9 November 2012

Skype's new online community for small businesses goes live

Rachel Hawkes, account director, Elemental By Rachel Hawkes

Skype in the workspaceSkype has officially announced the launch of its new online platform, 'Skype in the workspace' (SITW), an online community for small businesses.  SITW has been in private beta for the last six months, and was tested and used by 500 businesses that serve over 140 different areas.

Bought by Microsoft for £5.2 billion in May 2011, Skype has 280 million active subscribers with 27 million of those made up of small businesses.  SITW aims to connect business owners to share knowledge, collaborate and network with peers around the world as well as helping them grow their business by using SITW to book appointments and for live product and service demonstrations.

Ural Cebeci, head of small medium business advertising at Skype, comments, “We aim to connect millions of small businesses with Skype in the workspace and believe that taking advantage of this shared network, businesses can develop the range of tools they need to grow, regardless of location or industry.”  

Small business owners, entrepreneurs and start-ups can use their existing Skype account or LinkedIn profile to start using the platform.  Cebeci continues, “Skype in the workspace brings you closer than ever before to the customers, partners, suppliers and prospects that you need in order to be successful. No matter what your business or where you're based, joining the Skype community allows you to make valuable personal connections in real-time, face-to-face.  The feedback we have been getting from users has been great - we've heard tales of better engagement with customers and of businesses making use of tools that were not previously available to them.”

Businesses can easily leave testimonials for one another, build a portfolio, host Q&A sessions on their chosen subject matters or post work opportunities.  Individuals can also use SITW as a directory of businesses around the world.  Earlier this week, Microsoft announced that as of March 2013 it will be closing its messenger platform Windows Live and users will be migrated across to Skype.

Categories: Technology, Social media, News

Tags: Skype, Microsoft, Windows Live, messenger, windows messenger, Skype in the Workspace, SITW, small business, smes, entrepreneurs, start-ups, business collaboration, business networking, B2B network

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