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September 26, 2000


BarterTrust Hires Successful "Alternative Currency" Founder As New CEO

Mike Edelhart Turns Reins Over To Philip Letts

Internet Barter, which maintains the BarterTrust Network, announced on Monday (September 25) the appointment of Philip Letts, formerly Chairman and CEO of, to CEO of the company.

Under his leadership that company's annual revenues and shareholder value grew dramatically, rendering the firm as one of the most established and recognized alternative currencies globally. The company successfully raised more than $86 million in four rounds of financing. S

imultaneously, formed strategic alliances with Doubleclick, Ericsson, Exodus, MasterCard, Mondex, Oracle, and Sun Microsystems transforming it into one of the fastest growing global start-ups with operations in the U.S., Asia, and Europe.

Mike Edelhart, who had been CEO since founding the company in 1999, will continue to serve as a Director and will assist Letts with new strategic partnerships and initiatives.

"Securing a CEO with the stature and impressive track record of Letts speaks loudly and clearly to the magnitude of the opportunity in global b2b barter," Edelhart expressed. "The recent international expansion of the BarterTrust Network into Canada and Mexico requires an expertise and familiarity with global barter and technology-based trading, for which Letts is extraordinarily will qualified."

BarterTrust is an international business-to-business trade exchange used by thousands of companies that barter to buy and sell products and services across a wide array of industries. (Through barter, business are able to sell their goods and services for full value to other businesses as well as gain exposure to new and potential customers.)

BarterNet Raises Another $21.3 Million

BarterNet Corporation has raised $21.375 million in its Series B funding round. The new capital will be used to fund its rapid expansion and develop the internet trading platform.

BarterNet is building the largest global b2b marketplace for barter by bringing together existing retail and corporate barter companies and linking them through the Internet, which will help expand this $16 billion-plus global business by giving corporate and retail businesses more opportunities to trade products and services.

Closure of the round increases the amount invested since the company was formed in January to more than $26 million. Led by Trident Capital, this investment group also included Halpern, Denny & Company plus existing investors Alignment Capital, Wand Partners, and the partners of Parthenon Capital.

BarterNet CEO Laird Cagan said the funding is an affirmation of their business model. "While many internet businesses are having difficulty finding financing in today's environment," he explained, "our approach attracted the funding and support of world-class investors who recognize the market opportunity before us.

"Linking these premier, profitable exchanges and the businesses they serve via the Internet provides the muscle for serious growth on a global the benefit of the thousands of businesses already in the network and the tens of thousands to come."

BarterNet expects that by linking the most successful trade exchanges from around the globe in one network, business and revenue volume will increase exponentially.

"Barter enables TV Executives To Lower Costs"

--NBC Entertainment President Garth Ancier

When TV executives barter, they benefit. And the other side does as well, if successful. Mark Burnett, the creator of "Survivor" is the recipient of such a trade, as he accepted less in upfront payments for a cut of the ad revenue from his very successful creation. And Burnett is following the same barter strategy the second time around, for "Survivor II."

Basically, the same trade-out was followed by one of the nation's most visible CEO's, Larry Ellison of Oracle. He agreed to forgo salary and bonuses for four years in exchange for options to 20 million Oracle shares on June 4, 1999. At the time Oracle was selling for $13.75.

Sixteen months later Ellison has a big smile on his face as his barter arrangement has netted him a paper windfall of about $1.3 billion! The stock was nearly six times greater on September 12, 2000, than 15 months earlier. (Ellison can cash in 5 million shares every year.)


Here And There. . .

  •'s parent, Network Commerce, has signed over $25 million in licensing deals...for the company's technology infrastructure and online services. The licensing income will provide Network Commerce with an additional income stream over the next three years.

  • One of the most popular American sports in China is basketball. The center on their Olympic team, Yao Ming, dubbed "Baby Giant," is 7 feet 5 inches tall and only 19 years of age. The interest in basketball is due to the NBA's barter deal in the late 1980s. (A syndication effort for the NBA.)

    The "time" that NBA received for supplying the NBA games, which was resold, wasn't the big was the acquisition of a huge base of new fans. Reportedly, basketball in China is the fastest-growing sport in the country of 1.3 billion people.

  • BigVine co-founder, Eric Gertler, has left the company to become the CEO of Privista, an e-commerce site designed to give consumers the power to regain their privacy, control their personal data, and take advantage of personalized offers and benefits. Privista and the Privacy Council, Inc., recently hosted the first annual Global Privacy Summit in Washington, D.C. (Gertler will remain on the Board of Directors at BigVine.)

  • ITEX founder Terry Neal has agreed to pay $2.5 million to settle Securities and Exchange Commission charges that he orchestrated a scheme to overstate the barter business' assets, according to the SEC. With Neal's settlement, five of the six defendants in the ITEX case have settled, the only remaining defendant in the case involving ITEX who has yet to settle is Michael T. Baer.

  • AdPads, Inc. (OTCBB: APAD) has signed a contract with Frank O' Dell's, an innovative marketing company that specializes in providing media opportunities for start-up or growing companies in exchange for barter, cash, or equity.

  • The rock band Offspring is trading a new single "Original Prankster" on its web site (free downloading) in exchange for information, which will be used to develop a database of fans.

  • Several barter companies were left "holding the bag" when Premier Cruises, North America's fifth-largest cruise operator, shut down their operations earlier this month. (Five of their ships were seized in ports from Nova Scotia to Mexico by its primary lender, Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette) Reportedly, Premier--a discount operator with an aging fleet--had been struggling for at least two years. We know of one trade exchange's holdings of Premier credit being in the six-figure range.


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