RealTime IT News

Bluelight.com Going Home

KMart Corp. , is acquiring its free Internet service provider (ISP) arm, Bluelight.com, officials announced Monday afternoon.

The decision comes only two months after the parent company ousted the free ISP's top management and cut 38 members of the staff to merge marketing and buyer functions. The news is no surprise to many analysts who predict bricks-and-clicks companies will only survive as a function of the corporation, not as stand alone entities.

Bluelight.com, is essentially the company built around the ruins of Spinway, one of many free ISPs which went under last year. K Mart executives took the customer base of the defunct company and tried to lure them onto its online site to increase online sales. While the experiment successfully brought in more online retail business, it wasn't enough to keep the free ISP model afloat.

Executives were forced to make job cuts and bring in buyers from the parent organization to make sales. The free ISP model was also altered to bring in more online sales and weed out some of its more bandwidth-intensive customers.

Officials expect to finalize the merger, subject to shareholder approval, on or around Aug. 1.

Dave Karracker, Bluelight.com spokesperson, would not comment on details of the buyout (such as the number of shares that KMart needs to gain 100 percent control of the ISP or whether any jobs would be lost), saying only that shareholders are reviewing the proposal made by the parent company.