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Lycos to offer credit cards to members

An affinity card for Web users? No doubt the first of many...

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Lycos has upped the stakes in the Web wars with the introduction of its own-brand credit card, a Lycos Network affinity card arranged through US Visa and Mastercard card issuer Fleet Credit Card Services. From the beginning of next year Lycos sites will be allowing members to apply for the cards, and depending on the success of the programme Fleet will pay Lycos up to $22.5 million. Lycos will also receive royalties generated by the programme. At the moment the deal seems to be simply a Web equivalent of the now common affinity programmes being offered in conjunction with thousands of clubs, charities and pressure groups. But there are obvious attractions for outfits like Fleet. Web users tend to be more prosperous, and they'll obviously also tend to be less suspicious of electronic commerce, so picking them off early could pay dividends. Register worrying coincidence: Fleet Credit Card Services is part of Pennsylvania-based Fleet Financial Group. Many years ago a Register staffer used to work for a paper published by an entirely unrelated UK-based company, Fleet Financial. This paper was later taken over by noted master of creditworthiness and fiscal probity, the late Robert Maxwell. ® Click for more stories

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