November 1, 2001, 12:00 AM

The end looms for Netcentives

Netcentives has field for voluntary bankruptcy at the same time it announced a multi-million-dollar licensing agreement.

Internet Retailer

There was good news and bad news this fall for Netcentives Inc., the e-mail marketing and loyalty company. San Francisco-based Netcentives in October filed for voluntary reorganization under Chapter 11 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code together with its subsidiaries, Post Communications Inc., and MaxMiles. The filing comes after Netcentives has laid off half its staff, closed five offices and was de-listed from the NASDAQ.

Netcentives says it plans to keep operating existing loyalty programs, including ClickRewards, Delta SkyMiles Shopping and United MileagePlus Shopping rewards networks, the E-mail Marketing Group and other related services. In the meantime, it hopes to auction off business assets this month.

Netcentives has signed a letter of intent to sell its E-mail Marketing Group, formerly Post Communications, to Plum Acquisition Corp., a company headed by Post founder Hans Peter Brondmo. The transaction is subject to competitive bids and bankruptcy court approval.

At the same time it was reporting bad news, Netcentives reported some good news: It has signed a multi-million dollar patent licensing agreement with an undisclosed Internet media company to operate an online rewards program under Netcentives’ patents.

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