FindWhat.com Ventures Into B2B Search

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Paid search company FindWhat.com announced yesterday the formation of a joint venture with business directory publisher Thomas Global Register to create an online business-to-business directory service.


The service, ThomasB2B.com, will display paid listings powered by FindWhat's private label service. Thomas Global Register, which boasts directory listings by 550,000 industrial suppliers in 10 languages, will handle sales and provide the listings content. FindWhat said it would contribute $338,000 to fund the service's creation, expected for the second half of the year. Both companies anticipate further funding the joint venture, which is forecast to return positive cash flow in late 2005.


The deal is the fourth private label deal FindWhat has struck, including one with Verizon to power the paid listings on its SuperPages.com Internet yellow pages site.


Phillip Thune, FindWhat's chief financial officer and chief operating officer, said ThomasB2B.com would look to establish distribution partnerships to extend its reach.


The ThomasB2B.com paid listings service will work along the lines of consumer-oriented paid search, with advertisers bidding on keywords. Listings will be ranked according to bid price.


The business-to-business search segment has taken off more slowly than its consumer counterpart. ThomasB2B.com will compete with B2B search engines like Business.com.


Brian Morrissey covers search marketing for DM News.com. To keep up with the latest search marketing news subscribe to our free e-mail weekly newsletter Search Engine Marketing by visiting http://www.dmnews.com/cgi-bin/newslettersub.cgi .


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