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Direct Equity puts $4 mil into Mascot Network

Direct Equity Partners, New York, a fund designed to foster direct marketing and e-commerce companies, invested $4 million in Mascot Network, Cambridge, Mass. Mascot operates intranet communities for colleges. The financing will help Mascot use direct marketing techniques to improve communication with students, faculty and administration by expanding promotional activities and creating a sales force to recruit commercial partners interested in marketing to the college community. Mascot also named to its board Patricia Campbell, president and managing director of Direct Equity Partners. The Mascot investment is the second made by the fund since it was established in January by Gruppo, Levey & Co., New York, and Madison Dearborn Partners, Chicago.

S&H greenpoints.com hit the airwaves late last month with a radio and TV campaign to promote its new loyalty currency. The three-week effort from Mullen, Wenham, Mass., supports the launch of greenpoints.com in Foodtown supermarkets. S&H greenpoints, the 21st century reincarnation of the popular Sperry & Hutchinson Green Stamps, can be earned online, offline or via credit card, and can be redeemed at both clicks-and-mortar and bricks-and-mortar stores. The TV spot depicts a family window-shopping downtown to the nostalgic tune "How Much Is That Doggy in the Window" and ends with a girl earning a greenpoint online. The tagline is "Greenpoints. Earn them on the things you buy. Spend them on the things that make you happy."

HotSocket will use the $20 million it received in a recent round of financing to expand its business in providing online direct marketing and data analysis. The investment round was led by Highland Capital Partners and included investments from Bessemer Venture Partners, Goldman Sachs & Co. and first-round investor Zero Stage Capital. New York-based HotSocket has managed online consumer-response-driven direct marketing offers for clients including Business Week and Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide.

Grey Direct, New York, will offer marketing campaign results to clients more quickly through a partnership with Veridiem, Maynard, Mass. The Grey Global Group subsidiary will use Veridiem's real-time tracking and marketing performance management technology to provide cross-media campaign results to clients. The integrated tracking system that Grey Direct will use is called Holistic Optimization Tool Results on Demand, or Hotrod.

Great Atlantic & Pacific Tea Co. announced it will use Market Logic's One-to-One Direct program to deliver targeted coupon offers to grocery store shoppers. Market Logic, Costa Mesa, Calif., a Catalina Marketing Corp. subsidiary, uses database information to create targeted direct mail programs for frequent shoppers. More than 5,300 grocery stores nationwide currently use the One-to-One Direct program.

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