IKANO Communications Secures $16.5 Million in FundingWritten by Debra Labelle
SALT LAKE CITY, UT – IKANO Communications, nation’s largest provider of private-label Internet services, announced that it has secured a $16.5 million credit facility from Hercules Technology Growth Capital Inc.
IKANO has entered into agreement with Hercules to establish a senior secured loan facility in total amount of $16.5 million. On April 19, 2005, initial closing, IKANO immediately drew down $5.0 million of line. IKANO will utilize net proceeds to fund acquisitions, including recent purchase of subscriber base of Amerion, a Washington state-based Internet Service Provider. IKANO will seek additional opportunities for remaining amounts under line.
"We are thrilled to have Hercules Technology on board as a capital provider,” said Henry Smith, IKANO president and CEO. “This funding will enable us to complete a number of key acquisitions including Internet Service Providers and related companies.”
During past year, IKANO has purchased subscribers and some related assets of approximately 15 Internet Service Providers. IKANO partners with Internet Service Providers to help reduce operating costs, increase revenue and expand geographic reach/product offering. IKANO’s private-label platform supports turnkey dial-up, DSL, VoIP, wireless access solutions, email/webmail, IM, hosting, billing, branded customer service/technical support, and automated accounting. IKANO is an Inc. 500 company, with more than 500 business clients and 300 employees. Headquartered in Salt Lake City, IKANO has additional offices in Logan, Ohio; Toronto, ON; and Pasco, Washington.
MSN PPC Advertising Network Finally Debuts Written by Joel Walsh
MSN is launching its own PPC advertising program with new demographic and behavioral targeting features in France and Singapore in mid-late 2005.
MSN PPC Advertising Long-Awaited Debut Announced You probably already know that there are really only two major players in world of PPC advertising: Overture and Google Adwords. By end of 2005, there will likely be a third: Microsoft's MSN Search.
Microsoft recently announced that it is launching its new MSN PPC advertising engine in Singapore and France by mid-late 2005. Smart marketers are probably already planning how they might justify advertising their products or services in Singapore to get a taste of new service. The service's introduction into Canada, UK, and US may very well come before end of 2005.
The new MSN advertising program has been long awaited. MSN is Microsoft's leading website property, and perhaps web's most visited "portal" (website with both search and content such as news) after Yahoo! MSN's search engine accounts for one in five web searches, putting it in third place behind Google and Yahoo!
Search engine advertising mostly a two-player game Currently, MSN shows advertising that comes from Overture, web's largest online advertising network in terms of revenue. Overture was bought by Yahoo! a number of years ago. Since Yahoo! is direct competitor of MSN in every way, plenty of people have been wondering why MSN didn't take its advertising program in-house long ago. It seems especially strange considering that even Lycos, whose search engine now accounts for a small fraction of total web searches, has its own advertising network.
In many minds, fact that Microsoft would go to Overture only demonstrated how excellent an online advertising program Overture was, and just how hard it really is to set one up. Before going to Overture, MSN was getting advertising from LookSmart, an advertising network that does not own any websites that compete with Microsoft properties in any big way. Even before it had lost its largest advertising outlet, LookSmart was widely seen as a subpar second-tier engine, in a category with FindWhat or even Kanoodle. The fact that LookSmart had seemingly squandered a chance to make inroads into an online advertising market dominated by two big players cast a lot of doubt on whether there would ever be a serious challenger to Google Adwords and Overture.