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Peapod Launches Affiliate Program

Skokie, IL-based Internet grocery company Peapod Inc. launched an affiliate program that compensates other Web sites for promoting Peapod and provides an accelerated reward structure for introducing new customers.

The Peapod Affiliate Program differs from more traditional programs as affiliated sites can earn significant commission revenue faster, the company said. Web sites partnering with Peapod will earn a $15 commission for each referred visitor who places a first order with Peapod for local grocery delivery service, and an additional $15 for a customer's third order.

All return visits to the Peapod.com site are tracked for a week after they follow a link from a partner's site, regardless of whether they return from the affiliate's link or proceed directly to the Peapod site.

Web site owners register at www.peapod.com and are provided with a selection of banners and buttons to use.

"This program is indicative of Peapod's increased aggressiveness in marketing in conjunction with our strategy to streamline our centralized operations moving forward," said Peapod CEO Andrew Parkinson. "We are interested in Web marketing relationships that yield customers not just browsers," said Randy Pickard, director of electronic marketing at Peapod. "For this quality traffic we are willing to pay significantly more than the industry average."

Separately, Peapod said it recorded a net loss for the first quarter of 1999 of $5.1 million, or $0.29 per share, compared with a net loss of $4.0 million, or $0.24 per share, for the same period of 1998.

Net sales for the first quarter were $18.0 million, compared with net sales of $18.9 million for the same period in 1998.