AngloGold Opens Internet Gold Shop

April 11, 2000

AngloGold Opens Internet Gold Shop

The world's largest gold company announced plans to open an Internet gold shop that sells jewelry and investment services in an effort to boost demand for the metal.

AngloGold, along with partners J.P. Morgan and gold refiner PAMP, said a new independent company, GoldAvenue, will roll out a variety of gold products on its Web site, in the second half of 2000. According to Reuters, the three partners committed $20 million in seed capital to fund GoldAvenue's first year of operation. A trial run of the AngloGold Web site will begin by the end of June, with a full-scale launch scheduled by the end of the third quarter in time for the Christmas buying season. Kelvin Williams, marketing director, told Reuters there were no immediate plans to list the new company, but the partners have not ruled out such a move. Williams said the venture was open to new partners, particularly specialist retailers.

GoldAvenue is the latest effort by AngloGold to fire demand for a metal which has suffered record low prices in recent years, battering South Africa's gold mining industry. The company previously sponsored a variety of jewelry design competitions worldwide. GoldAvenue will initially offer retail jewelry, watches, bullion and accessories. Ultimately, the company plans to provide gold savings and investment services, financial services and gold trading, product and market information.

Analysts told Reuters the gold industry trails its platinum rivals in building a lucrative consumer market.

- by Mark E. Dixon