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RealTime IT News

Lycos Launches Credit Card, Portal Redesign

Lycos Inc. and Fleet Credit Card Services are partnering to offer a Lycos-branded credit card in a deal that will net the search engine $22.5 million.

In return for marketing the credit card on its group of Web sites, Lycos will also receive unspecified, ongoing royalties as new customers sign up.

The deal also calls for Fleet to market all of Lycos' sites, which also include Tripod; Whowhere; Angelfire.com; and Mailcity.

Consumers will be able to apply for the special Lycos card, which carries no annual fee, in January.

Executives of both companies said the deal will offer significant advantages to their customers.

"The credit card alliance with Fleet is a significant agreement for the Lycos Network, allowing us to extend our relationship with members and consumers with a Lycos-branded credit card. The Lycos-branded card will also offer a platform for future electronic commerce initiatives," said Lycos Chief Executive Officer Bob Davis.

Separately, Lycos also announced Monday that it began a preview of a new design of Lycos.com which the company said will give users quicker access to the information they want. For the next three weeks, every fifth user visiting the site will see the redesign. Lycos will incorporate user feedback that will be launched after testing is complete.

The redesign offers a reorganized hierarchy that aids in reducing download times. Features include "Smart" Navigation relevant links; triple the number of Web guides; a new look for the Lycos Shopping Center; "drag and drop" personal pages and a simplified layout for its message boards and chat areas.