Feeds

AOL strikes my enemy's enemy deal with Kingfisher

Unite to fight Freeserve

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

AOL Europe has secured an exclusive distribution deal for Netscape Online sign up CDs with Kingfisher, as we reported yesterday. In return, Kingfisher will become "the exclusive retailer for electrical and home improvement products" for AOL Europe and Netscape Online, the brand new free ISP. It's a 'my enemy's enemy is my friend' kind of deal -- Dixon's Freeserve represents the biggest threat to AOL in Europe, while Kingfisher and Dixons are arch-rivals on the electrical retailing side. Our guess is that Kingfisher negotiated a very keen price for its dual anchor tenancies. In the rest of Europe, the retail giant building its own Freeserve knock-off (down even to the name -- Libertysurf), in cahoots with French gazillionare Bernaud Arnaut But in the UK, Kingfisher is effectively admitting that it's too late to build its own mass free-ISP brand. Instead it's committed to helping AOL carry the anti-Freeserve candle. Could there be any further tie-ins between Libertysurf and AOL Europe? Interestingly enough, the Netscape Online CDs will only appear in Kingfisher's 789 UK Woolworth stores -- and not in the retail giant's Comet white goods/brown goods/beige goods chain -- Britain's biggest electricals retailer, after Dixons. Presumably, this is a carrot for Kingfisher to dangle at another time. AOL Europe is promoting Netscape Online with ads containing the apocalyptic message 'The N is Nigh' -– dangerous stuff -– nigh for whom, Netscape? AOL Europe? Netscape Online is aimed at the "value-conscious segment of UK DIY -- do it yourself -- Internet users". So why is AOL Europe promoting the service with £60,000 full-page ads in the Financial Times, perhaps the least budget-minded segment of the British population you could find? Maybe the FT ad is a snob thing, or maybe AOL's media buyers have cottoned onto the fact that the "value-conscious segment" applies to just about the entire home Internet users population. Market segmentation by price does not work any more for British consumer Internet access: paid-for subscriptions are dead, and everyone knows it. Even AOL's 600,000 paying UK customers, who would have to be brain dead -- or at best, very, very lazy -- to continue paying a tenner a month, when they could get connected to the Internet for free. You can help cannibalise AOL Europe's business by popping into your local Woolies in the next few weeks. The co-branded Netscape Online/Woolworths CDs won't be too hard to locate –- you'll find them in the multimedia section. You'll know when the stock's in -- there's going to be display boards outside the stores promoting the free software and special display units inside the stores. ® Related Stories LineOne pokes tongues at Netscape Online Free AOL launches under Netscape banner Daily Net finance news from The Register

Website security in corporate America

More from The Register

next story
Phones 4u slips into administration after EE cuts ties with Brit mobe retailer
More than 5,500 jobs could be axed if rescue mission fails
JINGS! Microsoft Bing called Scots indyref RIGHT!
Redmond sporran metrics get one in the ten ring
Driving with an Apple Watch could land you with a £100 FINE
Bad news for tech-addicted fanbois behind the wheel
Murdoch to Europe: Inflict MORE PAIN on Google, please
'Platform for piracy' must be punished, or it'll kill us in FIVE YEARS
Phones 4u website DIES as wounded mobe retailer struggles to stay above water
Founder blames 'ruthless network partners' for implosion
Found inside ISIS terror chap's laptop: CELINE DION tunes
REPORT: Stash of terrorist material found in Syria Dell box
Sony says year's losses will be FOUR TIMES DEEPER than thought
Losses of more than $2 BILLION loom over troubled Japanese corp
prev story

Whitepapers

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.