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.

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