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Startup Gains Grant to Create Virtual Cash

[Sydney, Australia, May 12, 2000] -- Australian startup Technocash has been awarded AUS$94,000 (US$56,400) through the Federal Government's AusIndustry program under its Commercialising Emerging Technologies (COMET) scheme.

The company will use the grant to develop its patent-pending technology for virtual money, designed to replace cash for consumers not willing to use credit cards on the Internet, or for users who do not own a card.

As well as providing an alternative for consumers, Technocash has been created to offer merchants a new market that is willing to purchase online, said company director and co-inventor of the technology, Paul Monstead

Technocash will be distributed through retailers and through the company's site, and can be purchased in any denomination or currency. Users can also create a password for their Technocash, to secure it further, and can check the balance of the Technocash they have through the company's site.

When Technocash is purchased, a serial number is issued with it, and quote this number when buying online. When a merchant receives a Technocash payment, the order is referred to the Technocash site for confirmation and deduction, and the company authorizes the funds to be transferred to the merchant.

With government support for the technology, Technocash is now seeking seed capital from investors. The company is also settling contracts for distributing its technology, with an aim of reaching "10,000 distribution networks nationwide, and an equal number of online merchant outlets that accept Technocash as their preferred means of payment," said Monsted.