Yahoo!7 and Xtra New Zealand's website launched

Thursday, March 1, 2007

The partnership between New Zealand's monopolistic ISP, Xtra and Microsoft New Zealand, XtraMSN has expired today and has been replaced with a partnership between Xtra and Yahoo!7, YahooXtra. Yahoo!7 is also a partnership, between Yahoo! and the 7 television station in Australia.

The partnership's website was launched today, as well as a new MSN New Zealand homepage.

Yahoo!Xtra are trying to become the homepage of all New Zealanders with the claim the partnership will beef up content, as well as being the biggest website in New Zealand in terms of revenue. Kevin Kenrick, Telecom's consumer products chief operating officer, who own Xtra, said the aim of Yahoo!Xtra was to, "Yahoo!Xtra aimed to bring the best available international content and technology into a New Zealand context." "We do think Yahoo!Xtra will become an extension of New Zealanders living rooms."

Chief executive of Yahoo!7, Ian Smith, said that two to three percent of all the advertising market was from online advertising. In Australia, that number is around eight percent, which Mr Smith expects to become the number for New Zealand.

Mr. Smith said: "Yahoo!Xtra will be the best of New Zealand linked to the best the rest of the world has to offer, and puts us in a prime position to capitalize on changing trends in media consumption and media usage."

Yahoo!7 will own 51% of the partnership, with Xtra owning the other 49%. Mr Smith will chair the board that will be created.

The partnership also means that current Xtra subscribers will receive a new e-mail messaging platform, but current e-mail addresses will remain the same. This will mainly happen because of the mail technology currently offered by Yahoo!

Other services owned by Yahoo!, such as Flickr and Answers, will also be brought into the new portal.

Mr. Kenrick and Mr. Smith both denied to disclose how much money from either sides has been invested, but do say that it will be profitable in the near future.

Other ventures between Yahoo! and telecommunication ISP's have occurred internationally as well.