The dot-com bubble was littered with plastics companies gone bust by big tech dream.
But not every major e-commerce play failed. When GE Plastics showed off its GE Polymerland website at NPE in 1997, the site wasn't a major player in the market. By the time NPE 2000 came around, GE Plastics estimated the site's annual sales at between $750 million and $1 billion.
More than 30 companies, some direct competitors to GE Plastics, sold products through the site. GE Plastics placed Polymerland in charge of all resin sales by the end of 2000, and customers quickly adopted the online format.
Not everyone was as successful at the e-commerce game as GE Plastics. Most notably was Commerx Inc.'s PlasticsNet.com. It launched in 1995 with an aim to become the industry's primary online portal. That goal was never achieved.
While it struggled to gain foothold, PlasticsNet filed for an initial public offering in early 2000. The company had hopes of raising as much as $100 million. The IPO was delayed as the company attempted to boost its value, but the tech bubble burst in the meantime, and that spelled doom for the dot-com darling. A second IPO offer was pulled in October of 2000.
Others, including SupplierMarket, Omnexus, Covisint, ChemConnect, CheMatch, FreeMarkets, Supplybase, Polysort and Elemica all rose during the Internet bubble. Many crashed hard and went out of business.