MetalSite: "It Was Overhyped by Everybody"

Now that it's the latest casualty of the B2B meltdown, CEO Patrick Stewart discusses what went wrong at the online steel marketplace

When it comes to the stages of grieving, Patrick B. Stewart is still in denial. Stewart, the president and chief executive of MetalSite Inc., pulled the plug Jun. 6 on the innovative steel marketplace he started on the Internet in 1998. The cause of death: Despite keeping careful tabs on the budget, the business-to-business venture, like so many other dot-coms, simply ran out of cash. Its Web site, where hundreds of steel buyers once did their shopping, is now blank. And on Jun. 15, the last of its few dozen employees -- down from 130 late last year -- will leave their offices in suburban Pittsburgh for good.

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