Cash Register Daily Net Finance News: 8-14 Oct
14 Oct 1999 Financial services company First Global Group has launched the UK's first independent, online comparison and transaction service for life assurance. It was developed using e-commerce tools from eXchange Holdings plc.
internet.com -- the e-business and Internet technology portal -- has acquired press release distribution service, Internet News Bureau, for an undisclosed sum.
Porn site Whitehouse.com -- not to be confused with the Web site of the official residence of the US president -- is preparing to IPO in November.
Visualsoft UK Ltd is offering free Net-based training in areas such as NT 4.0 Systems Support, MS SQL Server and Novell Netware design from its site freeskills.com. It funds the training by generating income from advertising and e-commerce deals.
Ian Hanson has been appointed VP and MD of PairGain's EMEA Operations. One of his first jobs was establish a British division of the DSL access systems outfit, which he says will make PairGain well placed to take advantage of the liberalised telecoms market.
13 Oct 1999 Techie stock market Nasdaq is looking to set up its operation in Japan, according to a report by the FT. If the move receives regulatory approval up to 1,000 Japanese companies could join the list by 2002.
British interactive broadcaster Open could be set to float on the stock exchange despite the fact that the service only went live yesterday. Analysts have reportedly said the digital broadcaster could be worth £2 billion.
LineOne has secured a massive distribution deal after announcing an agreement with educational publishers Dorling Kindersley. DK will offer free access to the Internet via its branded ISP DKnet, supplied by LineOne, through its army of 10,000 home salespeople.
A spam circulated by a US domain name broker reports that drug.com recently changed hands for more than $800,000.
Vavo.com -- the British community Web site aimed at the over 45s -- is to become the "mature audience" channel for portal Lycos.co.uk.
Hyporium -- a new IT trading hub from Hyperchannel -- is working with educational bodies to develop a National Vocational Qualification (NVQ) in e-commerce to help meet the predicted shortfall in skilled e-employees.
E*TRADE UK is to be made available inside the walled garden of AOL UK's Web presence and to its 600,000 members after the two companies confirmed a joint agreement. The announcement is the first in a number of financial content deals to be announced by AOL UK.
12 Oct 1999 E-commerce consultants Viant have published research that shows there aren't enough e-commerce consultants to meet demand in Britain. It published its findings to coincide with the launch of its e-commerce operations in Britain.
BT’s Web-based Talk21 e-mail service is now available via Sky Digital's interactive TV service. The joint venture between the company and Open -- comprising BT, BSkyB, HSBC and Matsushita -- will mean over a million UK households will be able to send and receive e-mail through their TVs.
There are rumours that Energis -- telco partner to Freeserve -- could be ready for a £5 billion take over following its failure to buy Racal Telecoms, according to The Guardian.
Freequotes.co.uk has launched a message board specifically targeted for UK investors enabling them to swap their financial tips.
Old media-based outfit EMAP Online is to offer users a new way to buy goods using banner ads following a deal with NatWest subsidiary Cybuy. The technology enables consumers to buy without ever leaving the current web page and is believed to be just the ticket for impulse buying.
11 Oct 1999 Accountancy firm Arthur Andersen is to offer free advice to British Net start-ups in return for a slice of the new Web outfit after a similar scheme in the US proved successful, according to The Times.
British investors using the online service from Charles Schwab have traded £1 billion since the UK Web site was launch a little over a year ago.
Last week cut price airline EasyJet sold more seats online than by any other channel. It claims this makes it the "Web's favourite airline".
John Swingewood, the former head of BT's Internet division who walked out last week over frustration at the company's lack of investment in the Web, has strolled into a top job with BSkyB. As the new director of new media Swingewood is to ensure that Rupert Murdoch's satellite company doesn’t miss out on online opportunities.
Tesco's online groceries delivery service is proving so successful it has said it is to accelerate the rollout of the service across the country.
The number of Net users in Western Europeans will explode from 38 million today to 150 million -- or half the population of Western Europe --within the next six years, according to a study commissioned by Nortel Networks.
Daily Net Finance News: 15-21 Oct
21 Oct 1999 NewMedia Spark, the UK's first quoted Internet incubator fund (that's what the FT says, at any rate) is raising £2.86 million on AIM. The founder investors, including Luke Johnson of Belgo and Pizza Express fame, are pumping in £2 million of their own money, delivering a pot of just under £5 million. Not a lot of money is it?
That's the trouble with incubator funds, which tend to want an awful lot of equity from premature baby companies in return for very little capital. The baby companies are going to have to jump through a hell of a lot of hoops, to keep their VC paymasters happy. In an interview with the FT, non-exec director Johhnson said the fund would be ruthless in offloading companies that did not meet targets, keeping its losses as low as £300K.
In effect, investors in the fund are being offered the chance to back the Net star picking capabilities of the NewMedia Spark management team, while spreading risk among many companies. And, of course it needs just one big hit for their investment to be returned many, many fold.
20 Oct 1999 ActivCard -- the authentication and electronic certification technology outfit -- Eric Tocatlian to head up its new UK office based in London.
Medi@Invest PLC -- which invests in Net related unquoted companies -- is looking to invest up to £3 million in a child-focused education-oriented ISP. The company said it has entered discussions which "may or may not lead to it being granted the right to acquire a majority holding" in a new children's' ISP.
The X-Stream Network has agreed a one-year advertising and content agreement with online auctioneers QXL.com. Conditions of the agreement were not made public.
Prudential's loss making Net bank, Egg, has attracted 50,000 customers in just four weeks, the company said yesterday.
19 Oct 1999 Thomas Cook Interactive recently relaunched its Web site without offering Net users the opportunity to buy holidays online. It claims its customers have said this is "not an issue".
Nasdaq is planning to launch it techie stock exchange in London, according to a report by the Daily Telegraph.
Telinco's free Net service is a sitting duck Japanese Net company, Softbank, has paid $20 million for a 10 per cent stake in Dublin-based online trading technology company, Cognotec, according to the FT.
Management consultant, Michael de Kare-Silver, is the new e-commerce strategy director for Great Universal Stores. GUS is the parent to retailers including Argos.
18 Oct 1999 Online advertising is no pot of gold
17 Oct 1999 IT news service 'worth £800m'
15 Oct 1999 A regional consortium has launched a huge British classifieds Web site. Called Fish4, the site kicks offf with 30,000 jobs, 180,000 cars and 30,000 homes. It is backed by Northcliffe Newspapers Group, Newsquest, Trinity Mirror and a shed load of other regional paper groups.
Dialog Corporation is to buy the 30 per cent of Muscat, the high-end text retrieval/search engine that it doesn't already own for £2.5 million. Muscat is based in Cambridge, UK.
AIM-listed Affinity Internet Holdings reports its subscribers exceed 600,000, up from 175,000 in April. Pre-tax losses for the free ISP for the half year to June were £1.75 million on sales of £960K, against losses of £921K on sales of £167K for the previous full year. Ninety per cent of revenues currently comes from telco revenues generated by its Internet subscribers. ®
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