Page 4: Achieving profitability
E-commerce - using the Internet for business - has grown rapidly in the last twelve months. By promoting high quality e-commerce offers and focusing on presenting these offers in a familiar and compelling way, Freeserve has been able to create some invaluable sources of revenue. Not only has the number of businesses using Freeserve for their needs increased significantly, now over 230, but Freeserve has also developed its own offers by launching fsmotorist.co.uk and fsauctions.co.uk.
[email protected] represents over 100 of the country’s most popular online retailers. Freeserve’s Marketplace package offers everything that an independent retailer would need to set up an online operation. Partnerships with Barclays PLC and Bradford and Bingley Group have enabled Freeserve to offer banking and other financial services for small businesses and mortgages.
It is estimated that the UK online advertising market will grow from £50m in 1999 to £625m by 2004. Freeserve is determined to capture a significant share of this new market. There are already over 100 different advertisers, including many famous brand names. Freeserve has also entered into sponsorship agreements for some of the key channels, such as Teletext’s sponsorship of the Travel Channel.
Between September 1998 and May 1999, e-commerce and advertising brought in revenues of £1.1 million. In the year to April 2000, this figure had risen sharply to £9.9 million. This growth rate is expected to continue. The more customers that use the Freeserve portal, the greater the potential for advertising revenues.