Spinway Adds Costco To Free-Internet Fold

Spinway Inc., has brought another
retail giant into the free Internet fold Monday, announcing a three-way
co-marketing program with Costco Wholesale
Corp.
and Yahoo! Inc.

It’s a continuation of Spinway’s strategy to acquire subscribers through
partnerships with recognized bricks-and-mortar companies.

The Internet service provider made a similar deal with K Mart Corp. and
Yahoo!, launching Bluelight.com to the masses. Spinway
also has co-marketing agreements with CapitalOne Financial Corp. and Spiegel .

Capitalizing on name brand recognition suits the ISP well, as it has
vaulted Spinway to the top of the charts as the eighth largest
Internet provider
in the nation with 1.7 million active subscribers.

Costco, an international wholesale warehouse chain,
offers its members name-brand merchandise at lower prices, as it buys in
bulk. As part of their membership, customers are eligible for Costco’s
free unlimited Internet access, and can install the software from a CD-ROM
available at all locations or from its web site.

Spinway will provide the 24/7 customer support and the ad banner software
that goes on every account using Costco’s free Internet access.

Steve Seabolt, Spinway chairman and chief executive officer, said the
addition of Costco builds on its network of retail companies and gives the
wholesale company an effective Internet presence beyond its Web site.

“Spinway is pleased to be working with Costco and Yahoo! to offer a
high-quality, free serve to millions of loyal Costco members, who are an
important addition to our network,” Seabolt said. “Spinway’s co-branded
free ISP service enables Costco to develop direct one-to-one relationships
with its members to increase online brand awareness and to provide
information on what’s happening at Costco locations.”

The wholesaler is also expanding its Web presence, inking a deal with
Yahoo! to become a premier merchant on the popular Internet portal.

Anmil Singh, Yahoo! chief sales and marketing officer, said Costco’s
addition increases the portal’s e-commerce platform, called Yahoo! Fusion
Marketing.

“We’re pleased to enter into this innovative relationship with Costco and
look forward to leveraging Yahoo!’s online platform with Costco-s offline
brand strength and loyal customer base,” Singh said.


“The agreement with
Costco and Spinway is yet another example of our commitment to offer a
great breadth and depth of high-quality products and services to our
millions of users. Costco is the latest select brand leader to choose to
communicate and transact online through Yahoo! Fusion Marketing, which
allows any company to build an audience, communicate with that audience and
sell to them online.”

It’s a potential windfall for Yahoo! and Spinway, with more than 33 million
Costco cardholders worldwide, 80,000 employees and sales of more than $31
billion last fiscal year.

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