Beenz.com to Lowe Direct

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U.K.-based global Web currency company Beenz.com has given Lowe Direct the task of mounting a $10 million direct marketing campaign in the U.S. and the U.K.

Lowe Direct will handle Beenz.com's advertising, direct mail and other direct marketing activities, including online advertising. The aim of the campaign is to recruit more traders to Beenz.com as well as introduce the company to consumers in September.

Web surfers that visit, interact or shop at participating Web sites will "earn'' beenz, which can be spent at participating Web sites to buy a variety of items, including books and CDs.

So far, participating online companies include Sony Friend Factory U.K., Gamespot, PC Flowers, Sporting Life and Captain Euro.

The Web currency recently got a significant boost when it signed a marketing alliance with DoubleClick, which handles advertising sales for a large number of Web sites around the world. Under the agreement, DoubleClick will encourage its client Web sites to join the Beenz program and distribute the beenz currency.

Beenz.com Chief Marketing Officer Nicolas de Santis said, "Beenz has grown very quickly in just two and a half months. With over 75 million beenz in the 'beenz economy' and approaching 150 traders, we are now at a stage where direct marketing will play a crucial role in recruiting more tradersas well as generating and driving greater consumer awareness.''

Lowe Direct Managing Partner Ian Taylor said of his new client, "Beenz is a unique concept to market as it is an on-line marketing tool designed to grab the consumer's attention, influence their behavior and ultimately drive consumption. Intoday's marketing arena, where marketers are grappling with howthey can improve their company's online presence and effectiveness on the Web, beenz act as a magnet to 'pull' consumers toyour Web site.''

Western Initiative Media, part of the Lowe Group, will handle media planning and online advertising for the campaign.In the U.S., Lowe Fox Pavlika will handle the direct marketing campaign.

Copyright June 1999, Crain Communications Inc.

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