Objectives and dynamic strategies in an expanding market
A Freeserve case study

Page 1: Introduction

In September 1998, Freeserve sent shockwaves through the emerging Internet market by becoming the UK’s first fully featured free Internet Service. On August 2nd 1999, after less than a year of trading, Freeserve became the first Internet brand in the UK to be floated on the London Stock Exchange. Since then the market has been flooded with competitors, but Freeserve has been able to maintain...
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Page 2: Corporate objectives and strategy

It is very important for a firm to decide exactly what it is trying to achieve. Freeserve is an example of a company with very clear objectives. Traditional economic theory suggests that all companies attempt to maximise profits at all times. Freeserve, however, has chosen to maximise growth. This is seen as the most sensible objective in a market that is growing as rapidly as the Internet...
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Page 3: Differentiating Freeserve

Freeserve began in September 1998 as the pioneer of free Internet access for the cost of a local phone call. By August 1999, it had captured 30% of the UK market; this has continued to grow and is currently around 37%. The average weekly total minutes of Internet use has climbed from 29 million in June 1998 to 206 million by December 1999. The ISP continues to win awards for quality and as a...
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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...
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Page 5: Strategic partnerships

The Freeserve software continues to be pre-loaded or bundled with the vast majority of PCs and related hardware sold through the Dixons Group stores. The development of new platforms, such as WAP (Wireless Application Protocol) mobile phones and the brand new broadband platforms has enabled Freeserve to maintain its market position. Freeserve has a unique partnership with BT Cellnet, which has...
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Page 6: Conclusion

Alongside the marketing strategy, Freeserve has developed a strategy for the people it employs. In November 1998, Freeserve only employed two people. There are now nearly 300, working in five different locations. If Freeserve is going to succeed in its vision to become ‘the trusted Internet brand, touching the lives of everyone in the UK, everyday’, all its employees need to be totally...
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