Chinadotcom, spotcast sign m-commerce JV in Asia

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HONG KONG--Internet company Chinadotcom Corp. has signed a joint venture with U.S.-based mobile commerce enabler Spotcast Communications to develop m-commerce and new-media advertising technologies for Asian markets through its wholly owned subsidiary 24/7 Media Asia.

The joint venture is designed to unlock the largely untapped but massive m-commerce market in Asia Pacific, which is esti-mated to reach $2.54 billion in 2000, and to increase to $11.08 billion by 2003, according to Andersen Consulting.

Through the joint venture, 24/7 will have the exclusive Asian rights to provide advertising, sponsorships, e-commerce, e-marketing and direct marketing branded solutions to mobile-phone operators who use Spotcast's mobile advertising delivery system.

"Voice advertising and m-commerce applications are the next wave of e-commerce, and this partnership gives us the market reach to meet the needs of advertisers and mobile operators, while delivering targeted advertisements and useful information based on an individual's demographic profile," says Spotcast CEO Marc Owensby.

Spotcast's enabling technology was designed to match the personal profile of a person to relevant and targeted content, advertising, information, Web and Wireless Application Protocol (WAP) sites.

The activities of the new joint venture are expected to heighten user response and recall to sharply targeted advertising, spur informed consumer spending throughout the Asia Pacific region and pave the way for the regular use of advanced interactive applications.

In Hong Kong, Spotcast currently supplies mobile phone advertising systems and services to SmarTone and Peoples Phone. The company plans further roll-outs this year in Singapore, Malaysia, Australia and the Philippines.

Copyright April 2000, Crain Communications Inc.

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