E-commerce firm CheckFree said this week it will invest as much as
$50 million on four key initiatives to capitalize on the 100 million Internet
consumers it believes will be offered its electronic billing and payment
services during the next 12 to 18 months.
The company said it expects to increase its subscribers
by close to 67 percent during the fiscal year ending June 2000, but may
suffer a temporary financial net loss in the process.
The four initiatives are: funding free introductory offers to consumers;
implementing 100 top billers with dynamic electronic bills; developing new
electronic commerce services; and building out infrastructure that includes
an additional data center in Ohio and a customer care and payment facility in
Phoenix, which could expand capacity to service seven million subscribers.
The company also filed to sell 3.8 million shares in a secondary offering;
1.375 million of which are being offered by certain selling shareholders,
including 450,000 by three former members of the Integrion Financial Network.
“Last January, as soon as we announced that we had signed one of the largest Internet portals, all of the
other major portals began inquiring about working with us as well,” said CheckFree Chairman and CEO Pete Kight.
our issues with Intuit completely resolved, serious discussions are under way
with Internet portals and financial institutions committed to the ‘Net, which
together report serving more than 100 million unique consumers. This is a
tremendous opportunity for us. . .We’re going to make sure that we turn as many
as those consumers into CheckFree subscribers as soon as we can.”
CheckFree says it already has almost three million subscribers paying more
than 10 million bills a month, and has signed up more than 50 of the nation’s
top billers. It anticipates 5 million subscribers a year from now.
The company said the investments would result in an earnings loss for fiscal