iVillage Adds Community to Network

Building on its strategy to combine community and e-commerce, online women’s network iVillage Inc. late Wednesday bought community site and affinity group marketer FamilyPoint.com for $26 million in cash and stock.

iVillage will give FamilyPoint.com 550,000 shares of stock and the remainder of the purchase price will be paid in cash. The price could rise by $5 million provided FamilyPoint.com meets August performance criteria. Those results will be calculated in a few weeks.

FamilyPoint.com offers free memberships to families, groups or clubs, with 60 percent of the member traffic attributed to invitations and referrals from within the groups. Services available on the site include customized calendars, photo displays, message boards, chat, classifieds and online shopping.

“iVillage’s strategy is to be the place where women find the best set of resources to manage and enhance their lives every day,” said Candice Carpenter, iVillage Inc.’s co-chairperson and chief executive officer. “We believe the addition of FamilyPoint.com will promote repeat visits and amount of time spent on the iVillage.com site, and as members invite their friends and family to join their individual groups, our reach will grow as well.”

Additional meeting places and clubs will be created and appropriate links will be added to these sites to promote shopping in iVillage’s network, according to Carpenter.

expects the addition of FamilyPoint.com’s nearly 700,000 members will increase the network’s ad and e-commerce revenue. More than 60 percent of FamilyPoint.com’s audience is women, according to Joe Murgio, FamilyPoint’s CEO. Media Metrix reported that FamilyPoint.com has averaged 5 million monthly page views this summer.

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