404 Found! was launched in France in January 1998. It provides online marketing solutions. The UK site was launched in October this year.
It aims to target any businesses that are planning to take their marketing strategy online.
Characteristics The site was designed in-house and is very streamlined - it also has a quite conservative feel. All in blue, the site is relatively easy to use and not too text heavy.
Target demographics The software provided by the site is aimed at business development and IT directors managing online businesses across Europe.
Principals The company was founded by Romain Achard, the chief executive officer, Francois Dejeager, the head of international business development, and David Lerman, the head of sales and marketing.
Backers Key funding has been provided by Advent Ventures (UK) and Azeo Ventures (France). pounds 300,000 was reached in the first round of funding in July 1999 and the pounds 4 million mark was announced earlier this year.
Marketing strategy The main focus at this stage is to deal with prospective clients directly. By securing major partnerships 404 Found! aims to be able to provide clients with the fastest and the best routes to rich content, and merchandising tools to their affiliates.
Competitors In terms of providing software solutions to help merchants establish affiliate marketing programs, iMediation is probably the closest competitor for 404 Found! However, 404 Found!'s approach is different from its competitors in that its solutions are software based, which means that merchants can own rather than run their own networks.
THE YEAR AHEAD
We're not convinced
404 Found! will have to consolidate its position in Europe and build on its affiliation service, as well as launching and rolling out its customer loyalty expertise.