In its second-largest acquisition, Amazon buys the company for $970 million.
Kmart shoppers can now get free Internet access through the discount retailer's BlueLight.com and have access to personalized content and services from Yahoo!, says the New York City-based firm. Shoppers also will have access to a selection of Kmart merchandise, the company says.
The deal comes just days after Wal-Mart and America Online announced that they are close to signing a cross-marketing deal under which AOL will promote its online services in Wal-Mart stores in exchange for driving traffic to the discounter's Web store.
The Yahoo! services are provided through a customizable, cobranded site, Blueligh.my.yahoo.com. Further, it will be distributed and promoted on Yahoo! Shopping and throughout the Yahoo! network of properties. On the Kmart side, the service will be marketed to customers through offline, in-store promotions and through Kmart circulars, the company says.
Beginning in February 2000, the free Internet service is scheduled to be distributed in CD-ROM format at Kmart's 2,177 stores nationwide, says Mark H. Goldstein, CEO of BlueLight.com, and BlueLight.com's launch is slated for mid-2000.
The free Internet service is provided by Spinway.com, which provides businesses with cobranded or private-label free dialup Internet access for use in driving traffic and broadening brand identity. It is a marketing tool for user acquisition and retention, drives more traffic to partner sites and provides them with a constant connection to their user base, says the Palo Alto, Calif.-based firm.