Swedish post office, U.S.-based MyPoints

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SAN FRANCISCO--Sweden Post and San Francisco-based MyPoints.com have formed a partnership to launch an Internet direct marketing service in Europe. Internet consumers can enroll in the service and share detailed personal information inexchange for points. These personal profiles are later used to target offers to them by email and on the Web. Members earn points by responding to those offers and points may be redeemed for products and services.

The two partners will launch a Swedish version of MyPoints' direct marketing service, MyPoints BonusMail.

"Traditionally, direct marketers in Sweden have relied on postalmail, but BonusMail allows them to reward Swedish consumers to respond to direct advertisements by email," said Lars Jansson, project manager of Sweden Post.

The Swedish version of BonusMail has been designed to serve a population of approximately nine million adults, more than 50% of whom are already using the Internet, according to a June 1999 report by the European rating service Sifo.

"Our technology and our partner's position of trust as the country's post office makes for a powerful direct marketing combination," said Steve Markowitz, chairman-CEO of MyPoints.com.

The state-owned postal company is already a leader in Swedish direct marketing, with a 65% market share, according to the In-stitute for Advertising and Media Statistics in Sweden. As the volume of letters has declined in recent years, Sweden Post has embraced digital technology and the Internet more than any post office in Europe. Its online shopping mall Torget (the square) is home to more than 700 online stores. More than 200,000 Swedes a day visit the site, for which Sweden Posthandles online payments and delivery.

"Sweden Post chose to work with MyPoints.com over other rewards providers because BonusMail was the only technology that had merged incentives and email," Mr. Jansson says.

London-based global Web currency company beenz.com operates a similar program. 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.

Beenz.com recently 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.

Founded as Intellipost Corp. in 1996, MyPoints.com is a leading provider of Internet direct marketing, incentive and loyalty products.

Copyright June 1999, Crain Communications Inc.

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