Local News

Virtual Chamber of Commerce Brings the World Home

Posted April 28, 1999 7:00 a.m. EDT

— How would you like to network with business people from all over the world and do it from home? The Internet is making it all possible.

A woman in Carrboro has created a virtual chamber of commerce in cyberspace which allows professionals in the Triangle to network with people all over the world.

Triangle business men and women who use the Internet to connect with others in their field say it puts them way ahead of the game.

Mariana Fiorentino can sell you a house in the Triangle, but North Carolina is not the only place she has contacts.

"If you wanted to buy a villa in Tuscany, a flat in Paris, or an apartment in Buenos Aires for example," she says.

Fiorentino is an international real estate agent based in Chapel Hill who meets many of her clients in cyberspace.

"What I do with my business is use the Internet a lot and I network," she says.

"He's in Canada and he's looking for help in Switzerland," explains Wanda Loskot.

Loskot came to the United States from Poland in 1981. From her Carrboro home she helps people like Fiorentino connect with business leaders in other countries.

She has started an online mentoring program where people can share ideas and advice through e-mail.

"People who run their business on their own are lonely and don't have a sounding board, someone they can run their ideas through and get input. That's what a mentoring program provides them," says Loskot.

Loskot's mentoring program falls under theAssociation for International Business.

The AIB is an online chamber of commerce which has 9,000 members in 160 countries.