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Stumpworld Systems Acquires BuyItOnline

Stumpworld Systems Inc. said it launched an e-commerce initiative by acquiring BuyItOnline, an aggregator of more than 35,000 business links on the Web.

By mid October, Stumpworld said, a new BuyItOnline site will emerge changing from a simple link directory into an end-to-end virtual shopping center, offering merchant sites that are promoted via a national mailed coupon program. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Merchants using Stumpworld's $99 Online Merchant software will receive the same commerce functionality of large, high-profile e-commerce sites without the hassle or expense of developing, maintaining and marketing their online merchandising presence, the company said.

"We had been looking for the right partner to take BuyItOnline to the next level on the Web," said Ri Regina, Stumpworld's vice president of electronic commerce and former owner of BuyItOnline. "We saw the perfect match with Stumpworld--their creativity would give BuyItOnline shoppers a dynamic shopping experience in an innovative site design; and their contacts would give our merchants access to a powerful suite of resources that aren't typically available to the community of smaller retailers."

Online Merchant is designed to allow inventory updates, price changes, even complete store graphics modifications with just three mouse clicks, said Michael Clebnik, vice president and chief operating officer at Stumpworld.

Merchants at the new mall will have the option of two pricing plans: $79 per month (plus a 15% fee on confirmed sales) or $ 299 per month (plus a 10% fee on confirmed sales).

BuyItOnline said it will receive national coupon insertions for two years into all SuperCoups envelopes, a national coupon franchise business that sells coupon marketing programs to retailers that are mailed to 50 million homes. Coupon mailings in the SuperCoups program will be offered to the BuyItOnline merchant database, significantly expanding the limited local reach of the retailers, Stumpworld said.

BuyItOnline will be the clearinghouse for all orders through its transaction- processing partner, Internet Commerce Services Corp.

In partnership with Renaissance Software, BuyItOnline said it will provide a 24x7 toll-free call center for both merchants and consumers for account management, shipping and order tracking, dispute resolution, returns management and financial disbursements.

Stumpworld is a technology company specializing in re-engineering clients' businesses into the online medium. Clients include Media One, NYNEX, The Woolworth Corp. and Sony Music.

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