Dentsu creates media, shopping "cybermall"

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TOKYO -- Dentsu Inc, the world's fourth biggest ad organization, has created a "cybermall", consisting of interactive media content and shopping opportunities, in conjunction with the Fujisankei Communications Group.

The two organizations have set up the Fujisankei Electronic Commerce Experiment Council to run "The Super Mall", which they hope will become a model for media businesses in the digital age.

FCG is providing the content for the mall: its member companies range from mail order through radio and TV networks to newspaper, music/video and magazine publishers. For its part, Dentsu is managing integration of the system. This involves designing and managing the site as well as taking responsibility for merchandising, pricing systems and content production.

The Super Mall expects to have three sources of revenue: advertising, subscription fees and merchandise sales. Dentsu claims this approach will attract attention as a new way for the media industry to secure new revenue streams in the future.

The virtual mall has two zones. The media zone contains a range of free content accompanied by ads, as well as paid content. The shopping zone currently has eight stores open for business.

Copyright October 1997, Crain Communications Inc.

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