RealTime IT News

Barclaycard, Nomura Launch IndigoSquare

[London, ENGLAND] Barclaycard and investment bank Nomura International plc launched Friday their new U.K. shopping mall IndigoSquare and began a US $14 million advertising campaign to support the US $43 million venture.

IndigoSquare is designed, some would say ambitiously, to compete with the largest high street and out-of-town shopping centers -- most of which are packed with customers at this time of year. However, with Christmas goods having been displayed in many shops since August, IndigoSquare has left it late to capture any significant share of this year's consumer spending.

Since it was first announced some weeks ago, further details about IndigoSquare have become available. For example, its target for the end of next year is to have five million products, 350 retailers and half a million users.

As for variety, IndigoSquare can scarcely be faulted. The products it carries vary from a US $0.39 million wine collection to "worms for your garden," according to advance publicity.

Mark Shea, who has been newly appointed as chief executive of IndigoSquare, claimed the site signals "the real arrival" of the new economy as a part of everyone's daily shopping experience.

"Of the 17.5 million people on the Internet in the U.K., almost three and a half million are already shopping online; IndigoSquare has been designed to attract those shopping online now and to persuade the other 14 million to join them," said Shea.

Emmanuel Roubinowitz, a director in Nomura's communications & technology group, explained the rationale behind Nomura's investment in IndigoSquare, pointing to Barclaycard's attractiveness as a well known brand with a large customer base.

"We will also give guidance on financial and structural decisions, as well as on industry developments, using the skill and expertise of our dedicated research analysts," said Roubinowitz.

Customers at IndigoSquare do not have to pay with a Barclaycard, say the partners -- but it helps. Barclaycard users get a guarantee that they will not be liable for any fraudulent transactions on their account.