RealTime IT News

With Free E-Mail And Asian Portal, ZiaSun Shares Perform

Shares of ZiaSun Technologies Inc surged 100 percent in two days this week after a series of announcements.

On Monday, the company announced plans to provide an e-mail service free to any Web site, and, last week, it said it would launch an Asian-focused e-commerce portal called Asia4Sale.

Since last Friday, the stock has more than doubled from 11.5 to 24 3/4 yesterday with trading volume increasing from 53,800 shares on Friday to 876,800 shares yesterday (the stock did go down 4.35 percent on Wednesday).

The managing director of ZiaSun's Momentum Internet Inc., John Hirsch, based in Hong Kong, said that it was difficult to say why the stock was doing so well but indicated that the firms recent announcements might have been contributing factors.

For it's free Web-based e-mail system, ZiaSun's will use its existing Web-based e-mail program PINmail which is similar to Microsoft's Hotmail but charges an annual fee for added features and allegedly restricts usage to "serious" business people.

The new PINmail service will be absolutely free to Webmasters and users, according to ZiaSun.

"With the new free service any Web site owner or administrator in the world will be able to go to the PINmail Web site and register," said Anthony L. Tobin, president and CEO of ZiaSun.

"They will be able to add a free e-mail service to their website simply by downloading some HTML code and pasting it onto their pages," he said.

"Webmasters would then be able to set up and administer e-mail accounts under their own customized PINmail domain as well as accepting applications for new accounts from their users automatically."

ZiaSun's Asian portal, Asia4Sale, will be a three-part e-commerce site targeting the global market providing home shopping, industrial auctions and business barter of Asian good and services.

"The project is currently in an advanced stage of development. We have teams of programmers working on this in Hong Kong and Manila," said Tobin. "A major marketing drive is also being planned from our regional headquarters in Hong Kong."

"It is much like an industrial eBay, but we will be performing more like a traditional auctioneer, by taking legal possession of the goods and collecting payments," said Tobin. "This will avoid the sort of legal problems experienced by other on-line auction services when sellers have failed to deliver goods to the buyers."

ZiaSun's Asia4Sale portal will also leverage off its recent acquisition of Pacific Barter Ltd., an Asia-based operation specializing in business-to-business barter transactions, to build the barter section of the portal.

ZiaSun's management expects free PINmail and AsiaForSale to compliment the group's other Internet properties such as Swiftrade--an online stock trading network tailored for offshore investors, M Finance--an international finance news site, MediaHits--a banner advertising network, and Search Dragon - an Asian focused search-engine.

ZiaSun acquired these Web assets when it purchased Momentum Internet Inc., a diversified Internet services firm with offices in California, Hong Kong, the Philippines, and the British Virgin Islands in October 1998.

At the same time, it purchased a distinct Hong Kong-based graphic design and database management firm, Momentum Asia Ltd.