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Biofrontera: BF-200 ALA-Zulassung eröffnet großes Marktpotenzial – CFO Werner Pehlmann im Exklusivinterview
26.05.2010 | 10:33

Das Spezialpharmaunternehmen Biofrontera mit Sitz in Leverkusen hat sich auf die Entwicklung medizinischer Kosmetik und Medikamenten zur Pflege und Behandlung von Haut- und Entzündungskrankheiten spezialisiert. Im Interview mit a|m spricht der Finanzvorstand Werner Pehlemann über die bevorstehende BF-200 ALA-Zulassung und das zukünftige Wachstumspotenzial. a|m: Guten Tag, Herr Pehlemann, vor kurzem haben Sie die Zahlen für das abgelaufene Geschäftsjahr 2009 vorgelegt. Der Umsatz fiel mit 336 Tsd. EUR noch sehr niedrig aus. Mit welcher Entwicklung rechnen Sie hier für die kommenden Jahre? Biofrontera (Werner Pehlemann) Werner Pehlemann: Die Biofrontera ist ein forschendes Unternehmen, das frühzeitig einen eigenen Vertrieb etabliert hat, um so schon vor der Markteinführung des ersten Medikamentes den Markt kennenzulernen und ein Vertrauensverhältnis zu den Dermatologen aufzubauen. Trotz des sicherlich im Vergleich zu den Ausgaben des Unternehmens geringen Umsatzes ist dieser ausreichend groß, um die Ausgaben für Vermarktung und Vertrieb zu decken. Die tägliche Kommunikation mit den Dermatologen liefert uns indes wichtige Hinweise für die Bedürfnisse der Hautpraxen und bietet eine ausgezeichnete Grundlage für die Präsentation der wissenschaftlichen Erfolge der Biofrontera. Unser führender Produktkandidat BF-200 ALA zur Behandlung des hellen Hautkrebses wird nach der im Herbst 2011 erwarteten Zulassung als Medikament verfügbar sein und wir gehen davon aus, dass unsere etablierte Vertriebsstruktur dazu führt, sehr schnell signifikante Ergebnisbeiträge zu erreichen. a|m: Das Ergebnis konnten Sie deutlich verbessern, allerdings lag es mit –3,4 Mio. EUR weiterhin im negativen Bereich. Wann werden Sie den Break-even erreichen? Werner Pehlemann: Das Unternehmensergebnis findet sich in den immer noch hohen Ausgaben für die klinische Entwicklung von BF-200 ALA wieder. Mit dem nun erfolgreichen Abschluss der klinischen Erprobung von BF-200 ALA werden wir im laufenden Geschäftsjahr die Kosten noch einmal deutlich senken können. Einen ersten Hinweis darauf kann man dem in der letzten Woche veröffentlichen Quartalsbericht entnehmen. Die zuverlässigste Antwort auf den zweiten Teil Ihrer Frage ist sicherlich mit der Zulassung von BF-200 ALA zu beantworten. Mit diesem Meilenstein erwarten wir, dass die Biofrontera ihre Profitabilität erreichen kann. Hinzu kommt, dass wir mit unserem Wirkkosmetikum Belixos ebenfalls steigende Umsätze verwirklichen können. Da Biofrontera nur in Deutschland selbst den Vertrieb steuert, werden derzeit die notwendigen Auslizenzierungen an internationale Partner mit Hochdruck vorangetrieben. Der Abschluss eines Vertrages für den Vertrieb von Belixos in arabischen Ländern wurde kürzlich bekannt gegeben. Potenzielle Einkünfte aus solchen Vertriebskooperationen sind für uns heute nur sehr schwer kalkulierbar, sie stellen aber das größte Potenzial des Unternehmens dar. a|m: Was sind die Voraussetzungen für das Erreichen des Break-even? Werner Pehlemann: Mit der Zulassung von BF-200 ALA wird die wichtigste Voraussetzung geschaffen und gleichzeitig auch die zukünftige Ertragskraft deutlich gemacht. Mit der bereits heute gesehenen signifikanten Verbreitung dieses Krankheitsbildes und der Verdoppelung der Patientenzahlen alle zehn Jahre ergeben sich starke Wachstumsraten für Medikamente zur Behandlung des hellen Hautkrebses, von denen BF-200 ALA das Medikament mit der besten jemals dokumentierten Wirksamkeit ist. Wir betrachten den hellen Hautkrebs als einen der prominentesten Wachstumsmärkte in der Medizin. a|m: Im Herbst vergangenen Jahres erfolgte die deutsche Markteinführung des Creme-Produktes BelixosÒ. Lässt sich bereits sagen, wie sich der Verkauf von BelixosÒ auf den Umsatz im ersten Quartal 2010 ausgewirkt hat? Werner Pehlemann: Belixos® hat unsere Erwartungen voll und ganz erfüllt. Im Rahmen der Möglichkeiten und der Vertriebsstrategie haben wir in einem ersten Schritt von Dermatologen geführte Kosmetikinstitute besucht. Dazu bietet der Internetshop www.Belixos.de eine wertvolle Ergänzung. Nachdem das Produkt über diese Wege eine gute Reputation gewonnen hat, schließt sich ab Sommer der Vertrieb über den Großhandel und die Apotheken an. Bisher beurteilen über 70 % der Nutzer das Produkt als sehr gut, so dass wir eine für dieses Marktsegment sehr hohe und seltene Kundenzufriedenheit feststellen können. a|m: Neben dem Produkt BF-200 ALA, das sich bereits in der dritten klinischen Testphase befindet, haben Sie weitere Produkte wie etwa BF-derm1 und BF-1 in der Pipeline. Wie schätzen Sie das Marktpotenzial für die einzelnen Produkte ein und ab wann rechnen Sie mit einer Markteinführung? Werner Pehlemann: Um Sie kurz berichtigen zu dürfen, BF-200 ALA hat bereits die klinische Entwicklung vollständig und erfolgreich durchlaufen. Die Phase III-Studien wurden mit ausgezeichneten Ergebnissen abgeschlossen. Wir warten derzeit noch auf die für eine Medikamentenzulassung erforderlichen Stabilitätsdaten industriell gefertigter Chargen. Der Zulassungsantrag soll im Spätsommer gestellt werden. Nun zu Ihrer Frage. Wir wollten nie eine one-product-company sein und haben schon früh auf eine breite, allerdings auch kostenintensivere, Produktpalette gesetzt. Wir wissen um die Potenziale der Folgeprodukte sowie von Belixos, die die Nachhaltigkeit unseres Unternehmens sichern sollen. Mit BF-derm1 und BF-1 erreichen wir darüber hinaus Patientenkreise, deren Medikation bisher unzureichend ist. Das weltweite Marktpotential für die beiden anderen Medikamentenkandidaten eröffnet mit über € 200 Mio. für BF-derm1 und über € 1 Mrd. für BF-1 eine vielversprechende Ertragskraft für die Zukunft. Darüber hinaus sind die weiteren Vermarktungsmöglichkeiten für weitere Indikationsfelder für BF-200 ALA noch bei weitem nicht ausgereizt. a|m: In welchem Land bzw. Region sehen Sie derzeit das größte Wachstumspotenzial für klinische Kosmetik- und Pflegeprodukte? Werner Pehlemann: Für unseren eigenen Vertrieb ist erst einmal Deutschland das interessanteste Territorium, in dem wir selber den Verkauf und die Betreuung steuern können. Und obwohl Deutschland nur einen Anteil von 5 % des Weltmarktes einnimmt, haben wir mit unseren Produkten eine gute Chance, allein mit den in Deutschland erzielbaren Umsätzen die Profitabilität zu erreichen. Die zwei größten Pharmamärkte USA und Asien werden wir mit geeigneten Partnern erschließen, wenn die Zulassungen für die jeweiligen Länder vorliegen. Für alle unsere Produkte haben wir weltweite Rechte. a|m: Welche Ziele haben Sie sich für das laufende Geschäftsjahr gesteckt? Werner Pehlemann: Für dieses Jahr steht ganz oben die Einreichung der Zulassung für BF-200 ALA, hier wollen wir im Spätsommer unser Dossier abgeben. Darüber hinaus sollen die Ausweitung der Belixos-Serie und das Angebot über Apotheken Schwung in die Verkaufszahlen bringen. Die bereits angesprochene Verpartnerung von BF-200 ALA und Belixos in internationalen Absatzregionen spielt in diesem Jahr ebenfalls eine äußerst große Rolle. Begleitet werden müssen diese operativen Ziele von Kapitalmaßnahmen, die es der Gesellschaft ermöglichen, die Zulassung und notwendige Marketingmaßnahmen voran zu treiben. Auch hier haben die geführten Gespräche bereits zu ersten sehr guten Ergebnissen geführt. a|m: Herr Pehlemann, wir bedanken uns bei Ihnen für das Gespräch. Autor: a|m-Redaktion (quelle:aktien-meldungen.de)

PAHO/WHO Mobilizing to Meet Haiti's Health Needs after Earthquake
Health facilities are among the quake's casualties, complicating relief efforts

WASHINGTON, Jan. 14 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Pan American Health Organization/World Health Organization (PAHO/WHO) is mobilizing health experts to assess the impact of yesterday\\\'s earthquake on the health situation in Haiti and working with other United Nations agencies, international partners, and local authorities to mobilize and coordinate relief and recovery efforts focused on the quake\\\'s survivors. In addition to causing unknown deaths and injuries, the 7.0-magnitude earthquake destroyed or severely damaged at least eight health facilities, including at least four hospitals (see PAHO Situation Report). Compensating for the lost health services will be a key part of the relief response, noted Dr. Jon Andrus, PAHO\\\'s Deputy Director, in a press briefing today. Andrus noted that other immediate health priorities include: * Search and rescue of survivors trapped beneath rubble. * Treatment of people with major injuries. * Prevention of infection in wounds. * Provision of clean water and sanitation, and food for those in need. * Control of communicable diseases, such as diarrheal diseases and respiratory infections. PAHO/WHO\\\'s Country Office in Port-au-Prince was partially damaged by the quake, forcing its staff to work out of temporary facilities. In addition to its in-country staff, the organization is mobilizing its Regional Disaster Response Team, which is expected to arrive in Haiti tomorrow. Andrus noted that Haiti, as the poorest country in the hemisphere and having suffered through four major hurricanes or storms during 2008, is especially vulnerable to the impact of natural disasters. However, he said lessons learned from disasters throughout the Americas and the world should be used to improve the relief and recovery response. Among the lessons he cited were: * The bodies of victims of earthquakes are not a significant health threat to survivors. Mass burials are ill-advised, and all efforts should be made to identify victims and provide them with proper burials. This respects the human rights and mental health needs of surviving family members. * Disaster assistance from donor countries and organizations is best provided on the basis of on-the-ground needs assessments, and in coordination with national authorities. * Field hospitals set up by donor countries and organizations must be self-sufficient and should not require support from the local community. * Hospitals can and should be built to withstand the impact of disasters and should be planned and equipped to remain functioning after disasters. \\\"The additional cost of building hospitals to be disaster-safe is marginal,\\\" said Dr. Andrus, \\\"and so is the cost of retrofitting existing facilities. Most important, these costs are negligible in comparison with the cost of a failed hospital. Donor countries and organizations should keep this mind for Haiti\\\'s longer term recovery.\\\" PAHO was established in 1902 and is the world\\\'s oldest public health organization. It works with all the countries of the Americas to improve the health and quality of life of the people of the Americas and serves as the Regional Office for the Americas of the World Health Organization (WHO). For more information please contact: Donna Eberwine-Villagran, eberwind@paho.org, Tel. 202 974 3122. PAHO Emergency Preparedness and Disaster Relief (http://new.paho.org/disasters/?lang=en) SOURCE Pan American Health Organization RELATED LINKS http://new.paho.org/hq/index.php?lang=en

'Phones for Haiti' Cell Phone Recycling Program Launched
Used Phone Purchases to Benefit American Red Cross

ANN ARBOR, Mich., Jan. 14 /PRNewswire/ --ReCellular today announced a new way for Americans to provide support to the millions of victims of the January 12th earthquake in Haiti. Used cell phones can be sent in by downloading a prepaid mailing label at www.phonesforhaiti.com, with the proceeds going to the American Red Cross\\\' charitable efforts. \\\"The devastation in Haiti is slowly becoming all too clear,\\\" said Steve Manning, ReCellular CEO. \\\"Sending in your used phone is a simple and effective way to help with the rescue and rebuilding efforts already underway.\\\" There are an estimated 130 million phones retired in the United States every year. If even a small percentage of them are sent to Phones for Haiti, it would contribute millions of dollars towards relief from the devastating earthquake. ReCellular will give 100% of the phone value as a contribution to the American Red Cross; charities have already earned more than $20 million dollars in contributions through their partnerships with ReCellular. With rescue and repair missions already underway, it is critical that funds get to the region quickly. By using the postage paid label, supporters can have their used phones to ReCellular within just a few days, allowing for the rapid distribution of funds. All phones are accepted, though newer phones will provide the most value to the charity – in some cases $100 or more. \\\"The overwhelming response from all Americans to the crisis in Haiti reflects the depth of generosity of the American people,\\\" said Manning. \\\"We are proud to be able to coordinate this opportunity when the need is so great.\\\" About ReCellular With offices in the United States and Hong Kong, ReCellular Inc. is the world\\\'s leading electronics-sustainability firm. We provide solutions for the collection, reuse and recycling of used personal electronics that generate financial return for our partners, quality products for our customers, funding for charity organizations, and protection of the environment. Corporate, charitable, consumer and wholesale information is available at www.ReCellular.com. SOURCE ReCellular Inc. RELATED LINKS http://www.phonesforhaiti.com

Response to Haiti Earthquake Relief Via Mobile Giving at All-Time High Reaching $7 Million in Donations
Updated List of Available Short Codes to Donate in U.S. & Canada

SEATTLE, Jan. 14 /PRNewswire/ -- What: In 36 hours, donations made via mobile phones for Haiti Earthquake Relief have surpassed $7 million across all the short codes managed by the Mobile Giving Foundation, a nonprofit organization dedicated to helping other non-profits raise funds through mobile. This amount represents a mobile-giving record for funds raised for a single cause. But there is a long way to go. As more organizations support relief efforts in Haiti, additional short codes are available for making monetary donations to help those affected by the recent earthquake. By texting a keyword to a designated short code via a mobile phone, a micro-donation of $5 or $10 can be made to aid the millions of people affected by this tragedy. 100% of your donation goes to the recipient charity, and the donation appears as a charge on your carrier bill, standard rates may apply. Who: There are several organizations that are responding to this urgent need with mobilegiving efforts, including the following: Text the word \\\"Yele\\\" to 501501 to donate $5 On behalf of the Yele Foundation, the leading contributor to rebuilding Haiti founded by Wyclef Jean Text the word \\\"Haiti\\\" to 20222 to donate $10 On behalf of the Clinton Foundation Haiti Relief Fund Text the word \\\"Haiti\\\" to 85944 to donate $10 On behalf of the International Medical Corp Text the word \\\"Haiti\\\" to 25383 to donate $5 On behalf of the International Rescue Committee Text the word \\\"Haiti\\\" to 90999 to donate $10 On behalf of the Red Cross in the U.S. Text the word \\\"Haiti\\\" to 52000 to donate $10 On behalf of the Salvation Army Upper Wisconsin Text the word \\\"Haiti\\\" to 45678 (In Canada Only) On behalf of the Salvation Army in Canada Text the word \\\"Haiti\\\" to 30333 (In Canada Only) On behalf of the Plan Canada For more information on these various campaigns and how mobile giving works, Jim Manis, CEO of the Mobile Giving Foundation (www.mobilegiving.org), is available to provide an overview. When: Please contribute now. Contact: Ginny Edwards or Daniel Rhodes Global Results Comms, (GRC) +1 (949) 608 0276 mgfpr@globalresultspr.com SOURCE Mobile Giving Foundation RELATED LINKS http://www.mobilegiving.org

Red Cross Volunteer Judith Haney Urges Members of the Real Estate Appraisal Profession and Real Estate Community to Join Her in Donating to the American Red Cross International Response Fund for Haiti

BIRMINGHAM, Ala., Jan. 14 /PRNewswire/ -- Judith Haney, a certified appraiser and a life-long Red Cross volunteer, urges her fellow real estate appraisers and members of the real estate profession to act now to help Haiti by making donations to the American Red Cross www.redcross.org. Judith Haney states on her website judithhaney.com that donations to the American Red Cross for Haiti relief can be made in the following ways: 1. Make an unrestricted donation to the International Response Fund at www.redcross.org by clicking on the Donate Now button. 2. Call in a donation to the Red Cross at 1-800-REDCROSS or for Spanish call 1-800-257-7575. 3. By texting \\\"Haiti\\\" to 90999 to send a $10 donation to the Red Cross, through an effort backed by the U.S. State Department (http://www.state.gov/). Your donation will be automatically billed to your cell phone. Family members trying to locate U.S. citizens living or traveling in Haiti should contact the U.S. Department of State, Office of Overseas Citizens Services, at 1-888-407-4747 or (202) 647-5225, says Judith Haney. Judith Haney states that, according to the American Red Cross, some patients in Haiti are being moved to a Guantanamo Bay hospital, and the Armed Services Blood Program (http://www.militaryblood.dod.mil/) has asked the Red Cross and Florida Blood Services for support for those patients. In addition, the American Red Cross will be sending a shipment of blood products to the United Nations Mission in Haiti. The public can learn more about ongoing disaster relief in Haiti via Interaction (www.interaction.org/crisis-list/earthquake-Haiti), says Judith Haney. Judith Haney supplies real estate appraisal services in the following Alabama locations: Mobile 251-434-6414 Huntsville 256-535-0900 Montgomery 334-277-3997 Tuscaloosa 205-759-1660 Auburn 334-502-5099 Birmingham 205-321-3400 SOURCE Judith Haney RELATED LINKS http://judithhaney.com

Latinos Hard Hit By Economy But Cautiously Optimistic

LOS ANGELES, Dec. 22 /PRNewswire/ -- Garcia Research and Santiago ROI, two long-standing leaders in the US Hispanic marketing community, launched LATINOMICS(sm), The Hispanic Market Index(TM), an ongoing tracking service to monitor consumer sentiment, economic activity, political perspectives and other issues of the day within the burgeoning US Hispanic community. The initial wave, a national representative survey of roughly 600 interviews was conducted, 400 by phone and 200 online, in December 2009 with a margin of error of + or - 4%. Latinos, hit harshly by the recession, close 2009 with mixed perceptions about their well-being and where the country is headed, but they are generally supportive of Obama and health care reform. Half of Latinos say that their families are making less income than last year, one in three is making the same, and only 1 in 7 are making more. These tough economic times appear to be hitting the hardest on older consumers, the Spanish dominant, lower income groups and persons in the West and of Mexican origin. Given the data above, it is not surprising that six in ten Latinos say that they will spend less on the Holidays this year compared to two in ten planning to spend about the same and only one in ten planning to spend more than last year. Those less than 30 years old are most likely to plan to spend more or the same while those over 40 years old are most likely to plan to spend less. Again, the West appears to be in a tighter situation than other US regions. Interestingly, even though the incomes of younger Latinos do not appear to have dropped as much as their older counterparts, they have still learned to economize, with about half saying they have economized somewhat in recent months. \\\"Hispanics have been hit hard by the Great Recession ... \\\" says Carlos Garcia, President of Garcia Research. \\\"The lowest income, Mexican-origin, mono-lingual Spanish segment are seeing the worst of it. Still, this community has strong family support systems to help them weather such situations. Perhaps due to that support structure, they are largely getting by and optimistic for the future.\\\" In terms of outlook, Latinos appear to be optimistic in general. Fully 6 in 10 are making do - 4 in 10 Latinos say things aren\\\'t easy but they are managing to get by and about 1 in 10 say things are improving a little plus another 1 in 10 say things are going very well. Younger Latinos tend to be most positive while those over 40 years of age and those making less than $20K are most concerned over finances. Not surprisingly, this group of modest annual income is also the most likely group to say that they have seen more people leaving the US recently than people coming into the US. Despite all this hardship, 6 in 10 approve the performance of President Obama - 3 strongly, 3 somewhat - compared to the national average of 5 in 10. Only 1 in 7 disapprove (the rest are not sure which may suggest a reluctance to offer an opinion). Among registered voters, 7 in 10 Democrats approve the performance of Democrats in the Congress and Senate versus only two in ten Independents and Republicans. Dissatisfaction is greater among registered Republicans and Independents, among which only 3 in 10 approve of Republicans in the Congress and Senate versus only 2 in 10 democrats approving. In addition, among those registered to vote, 45% believe the country is going in the right direction versus 34% who believe the US is going in the wrong direction and 21% not being sure. The group most disenchanted with the direction of the country skews English dominant, pertaining to Latinos residing in the West and Southwest regions, where the economic conditions have hit hardest. For more information, contact carlosg@garciaresearch.com or carlos@santiagoroi.com. SOURCE Santiago ROI

Dow Jones Economic Sentiment Indicator Rises to 38.3
Positive Trend Driven In Part by Improved Sentiment Towards Shopping In Holiday Run-Up

NEW YORK, Nov. 30 /PRNewswire/ -- Increasingly positive media coverage of consumer spending contributed to a significant rise in the Dow Jones Economic Sentiment Indicator (ESI) in November. The ESI rose to 38.3, up from 36.9 in October. The Dow Jones Economic Sentiment Indicator aims to predict the health of the U.S. economy by analyzing the broad coverage of 15 major daily newspapers in the U.S. The ESI has risen 11 out of 12 months since its low of 22.2 in November 2008, data that confirm the consensus among economists that the U.S. recession ended sometime early in the summer. One key area of improvement in recent months has been in articles on shopping, a key indicator of consumer confidence as the holiday season approaches. One way that the indicator helps indicate future economic trends is by measuring gloomy articles such as Christmas gift guides which focus on bargain-hunting or store closures and balancing those with a more positive sentiment such as increasing spending or store openings. In November 2008 gloomy shopping-related articles outweighed positive ones by three to one, helping drive the ESI down to its lowest ever level of 22.2. This November the balance is much more equal, indicating a healthier economic outlook and pushing the indicator back to levels not seen since the collapse of Lehman Brothers -- although retail-related articles with negative sentiment still remain in the majority. \\\"The Dow Jones Economic Sentiment Indicator climbed to its highest level since August 2008, suggesting the U.S. economic recovery is entrenched and that the number of jobs lost during the month continued to shrink sharply,\\\" Dow Jones Newswires \\\'Money Talks\\\' columnist Alen Mattich said. \\\"Market expectations for November job losses have been falling, a view supported by the indicator. This in turn could underpin retail sentiment over the next month.\\\" The ESI represents one of the most comprehensive and far-reaching examinations of media coverage as an economic indicator. The ESI\\\'s back-testing to 1990 shows that the ESI clearly highlighted the risk that the U.S. economy was sliding into recession in 2001 and 2008 and suggests the indicator can help predict economic turning points as much as seven months in advance of other indicators. Unlike some other indicators where 50 is a clear break-point between recession and recovery, the ESI needs to be read with reference to longer trends. Based on the ESI\\\'s performance since 1990, previous recoveries have been marked by substantial month-to-month gains, with a jump of three points seeming to be a sign of significant improvement. A drop below 50 marks the point at which there is a clear risk of a slowdown. The Dow Jones Economic Sentiment Indicator is calculated using a proprietary algorithm through Dow Jones Insight, a media tracking and analysis tool. More information about the Economic Sentiment Indicator and its development is available at http://solutions.dowjones.com/esi . Dow Jones Insight uses innovative text mining and analytic technologies to help organizations keep informed about relevant issues, news, conversations and trends emerging in mainstream, Web and social media. Dow Jones Insight\\\'s global content collection includes more than 25,000 news and information sources as well as blogs, message boards, and posts from YouTube and Twitter. About Dow Jones Dow Jones & Company is a News Corporation company. ( NWS, NWSA; ASX: NWS, NWSLV; www.newscorp.com) Dow Jones is a leading provider of global business news and information services. Its Consumer Media Group publishes The Wall Street Journal, Barron\\\'s, MarketWatch and the Far Eastern Economic Review. Its Enterprise Media Group includes; Dow Jones Business & Relationship Intelligence, Dow Jones Newswires, Dow Jones Factiva, Dow Jones Client Solutions, Dow Jones Indexes and Dow Jones Financial Information Services. Its Local Media Group operates community-based information franchises. Dow Jones owns 50 percent of SmartMoney and 33 percent of STOXX Ltd. and provides news content to radio stations in the U.S. The Dow Jones Economic Sentiment Indicator is provided for analysis purposes only and Dow Jones makes no representation that the indicator is a definitive predictor of sentiment or the health of the U.S. economy. This report does not in any way reflect an opinion of Dow Jones regarding the U.S. economy or the suitability of any investments. SOURCE Dow Jones & Company

On2 and Google Announce Exchange Ratio for On2 Merger

CLIFTON PARK, N.Y. and MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif., Dec. 16 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- On2 Technologies, Inc. (NYSE Amex: ONT) and Google Inc. (Nasdaq: GOOG) jointly announced today that the exchange ratio, or the fraction of a share of Google Class A Common Stock to be issued for each share of On2 Common Stock in connection with Google\\\'s proposed acquisition of On2, will be 0.0010. Any fractional share of Google Class A Common Stock (after aggregating all fractional shares of Google Class A Common Stock issuable to an On2 stockholder) resulting from the exchange of On2 Common Stock for Google Class A Common Stock will be paid out in a cash amount (rounded to the nearest whole cent), without interest, determined by multiplying such fraction by the trading price, as defined below. The exchange ratio was determined by dividing $0.60 per share by the trading price, which is defined in the merger agreement as the volume weighted average trading price of a share of Google Class A Common Stock based on the sales price of every share of Google Class A Common Stock traded during the 20 trading-day period ending on and including the second trading day prior to the date of the special meeting of On2\\\'s stockholders to consider and vote on the proposed merger. The special meeting of On2\\\'s stockholders is scheduled for Friday, December 18, 2009 at 4:00 p.m. EST. About On2 Technologies, Inc. On2 (NYSE Amex: ONT) creates advanced video compression technologies that power the video in today\\\'s leading desktop and mobile applications and devices. On2 customers include Adobe, Skype, Nokia, Infineon, Sun Microsystems, Mediatek, Sony, Brightcove, and Move Networks. On2 Technologies is headquartered in Clifton Park, NY USA. For more information, visit www.on2.com or www.on2.cn. About Google Inc. Google\\\'s innovative search technologies connect millions of people around the world with information every day. Founded in 1998 by Stanford Ph.D. students Larry Page and Sergey Brin, Google today is a top web property in all major global markets. Google\\\'s targeted advertising program provides businesses of all sizes with measurable results, while enhancing the overall web experience for users. Google is headquartered in Silicon Valley with offices throughout the Americas, Europe and Asia. For more information, visit www.google.com. Caution Concerning Forward-Looking Statements This document includes certain forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, including statements regarding Google\\\'s and On2\\\'s ability to close the acquisition. These statements are based on the current expectations or beliefs of managements of Google Inc. and On2 Technologies, Inc., and are subject to uncertainty and changes in circumstances. Actual results may vary materially from those expressed or implied by the statements herein due to (1) changes in economic, business, competitive, technological and/or regulatory factors, (2) failure to receive the required stockholder approval of the acquisition, (3) failure to compete successfully in this highly competitive and rapidly changing marketplace, (4) failure to retain key employees, and (5) other factors affecting the operation of the respective businesses of Google and On2. More detailed information about these and other factors that may affect current expectations may be found in filings by Google or On2, as applicable, with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including their respective most recent Annual Reports on Form 10-K and Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q. Google and On2 are under no obligation to, and expressly disclaim any such obligation to, update or alter their respective forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events, or otherwise. Additional Information and Where to Find It Google filed a Registration Statement with the SEC in connection with the proposed merger, which includes a Proxy Statement of On2 and also constitutes a Prospectus of Google. The definitive proxy statement/prospectus dated November 3, 2009 has been mailed to holders of On2 Common Stock identified as of October 20, 2009, which is the notice record date for the special meeting, and as of December 3, 2009, which is the voting record date for the special meeting. The Registration Statement and the proxy statement/prospectus contain important information about Google, On2, the proposed merger and related matters. Investors and security holders are urged to read the Registration Statement and the proxy statement/prospectus (including all amendments and supplements to it) carefully. Investors and security holders may also obtain free copies of the Registration Statement and the proxy statement/prospectus and other documents filed with the SEC by Google and On2 through the web site maintained by the SEC at www.sec.gov and by contacting Google Investor Relations at +1-650-253-7663 or On2 Investor Relations at +1-518-881-4299. In addition, investors and security holders can obtain free copies of the documents filed with the SEC on Google\\\'s website at investor.google.com and on On2\\\'s website at www.on2.com. SOURCE On2 Technologies, Inc

Understanding Risk Versus Reward...And Avoiding Investment Fraud: The Web's Best Resources for Investors Outlined

WASHINGTON, Dec. 16 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- As most investors know, risk is an inherent part of investing; it is what makes the reward of positive returns possible. Too often, investors focused on big returns are persuaded to enter into what turn out to be fraudulent schemes promising the moon and the stars for little or no risk. A new resource being made available today from the nonprofit Alliance for Investor Education (AIE) highlights 12 of the best Web-based resources for investors to learn about investment fraud and how to avoid it. The Alliance\\\\\\\'s new \\\\\\\"The Risk-Reward Relationship: What Investors Need to Understand to Avoid Fraud\\\\\\\" is available at http://www.investoreducation.org/riskreward. AIE is the organization of the 21 leading U.S. financial-related foundations, nonprofit organizations, associations and governmental agencies. Alliance for Investor Education President Dallas Salisbury, who also serves as president and CEO of the Employee Benefit Research Institute (EBRI) and chairman of the American Savings Education Council (ASEC), said: \\\\\\\"Most investors are aware that investing in the stock market involves risk. But part of that risk should not be that investors will become victims of fraud. Members of the Alliance are devoted to raising awareness of the ways investors can avoid becoming a victim of investment fraud in order to make the risk-reward relationship work for them. Americans should know the best places to educate themselves about fraud so they can avoid it and have the confidence to make good investing decisions to grow their nest egg for the future.\\\\\\\" The new \\\\\\\"The Risk-Reward Relationship: What Investors Need to Understand to Avoid Fraud\\\\\\\" section of the AIE Web site features the following 12 top resources for consumers: 1. Ten Ways to Avoid Investment Fraud - http://tinyurl.com/yhbjl2b, CFA Institute. 2. Investing Smart from the Start - http://tinyurl.com/yjj6nqk, U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. 3. Scams and Swindles: An Educational Guide to Avoiding Investment Fraud - http://tinyurl.com/yg84y9b, National Futures Association. 4. Tricks of the Trade: Outsmarting Investment Fraud - http://tinyurl.com/yh23lmg, FINRA Investor Education Foundation/SaveandInvest.org. 5. Investment Fraud Awareness Quiz - http://tinyurl.com/ygbxz6u, North American Securities Administrators Association. 6. Understanding Risk - http://tinyurl.com/ylcmly4, American Institute of Certified Public Accountants/360 Degrees of Financial Literacy. 7. Money Matters Scam Watch - http://tinyurl.com/yzjkf63, Federal Trade Commission. 8. Protecting Yourself Against Fraud - http://tinyurl.com/yk6x8ql, Securities Investor Protection Corporation. 9. Consumer Fraud/Investor Protection Resources - http://tinyurl.com/yjjnqwq, Employee Benefit Research Institute/Choose to Save. 10. Investment Fraud - http://tinyurl.com/yjfh7ad and Protect Yourself Video Segments - http://tinyurl.com/yknxrfs, Investor Protection Trust. 11. Frauds and Scams: Protect Yourself and Your Money - http://tinyurl.com/ykksr7b, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System. 12. 10 Steps to Avoiding Ponzi Schemes and Financial Fraud - http://tinyurl.com/yl4slep, American Association of Individual Investors. For an overview of the rest of the best investor education resources on the Web from AIE members, go to http://www.investoreducation.org. ABOUT AIE Founded in 1996, the Alliance for Investor Education Web site at http://www.InvestorEducation.org provides investors with access to a full range of information they need to make wise investment decisions. The 21-member Alliance for Investor Education is dedicated to facilitating greater understanding of investing, investments and the financial markets among current and prospective investors of all ages. We pursue initiatives for education and join with others to motivate Americans to obtain objective information and increase their knowledge and understanding of investing. Full members of the Alliance include: American Association of Individual Investors, American Institute of Certified Public Accountants/360 Degrees of Financial Literacy, EBRI/ASEC, BetterInvesting, CFA Institute, Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Inc., Financial Publishers Association, Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, Investment Company Institute Education Foundation, Investor Protection Trust, Council for Economic Education, National Endowment for Financial Education, National Futures Association, Retirement Security Project, SIFMA Foundation for Investor Education and the Securities Investor Protection Corporation. The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission, the U.S. Federal Trade Commission\\\\\\\'s Bureau of Consumer Protection, the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, and the North American Securities Administrators Association are the governmental and quasi-governmental advisors to the Alliance. SOURCE Alliance for Investor Education, Washington, D.C.

Apple Reports First Quarter Results
All-Time Highest Revenue and Profit

New Accounting Standards Adopted CUPERTINO, Calif., Jan. 25 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Apple® today announced financial results for its fiscal 2010 first quarter ended December 26, 2009. The Company posted revenue of $15.68 billion and a net quarterly profit of $3.38 billion, or $3.67 per diluted share. These results compare to revenue of $11.88 billion and net quarterly profit of $2.26 billion, or $2.50 per diluted share, in the year-ago quarter. Gross margin was 40.9 percent, up from 37.9 percent in the year-ago quarter. International sales accounted for 58 percent of the quarter\\\'s revenue. Apple sold 3.36 million Macintosh® computers during the quarter, representing a 33 percent unit increase over the year-ago quarter. The Company sold 8.7 million iPhones in the quarter, representing 100 percent unit growth over the year-ago quarter. Apple sold 21 million iPods during the quarter, representing an eight percent unit decline from the year-ago quarter. During the quarter Apple elected retrospective adoption of the Financial Accounting Standards Board\\\'s amended accounting standards* related to certain revenue recognition. Adoption of the new accounting standards significantly changes how the Company accounts for certain items, particularly sales of iPhone® and Apple TV®. \\\"If you annualize our quarterly revenue, it\\\'s surprising that Apple is now a $50+ billion company,\\\" said Steve Jobs, Apple\\\'s CEO. \\\"The new products we are planning to release this year are very strong, starting this week with a major new product that we\\\'re really excited about.\\\" \\\"We are very pleased to have generated $5.8 billion in cash during the quarter,\\\" said Peter Oppenheimer, Apple\\\'s CFO. \\\"Looking ahead to the second fiscal quarter of 2010, we expect revenue in the range of about $11.0 billion to $11.4 billion and we expect diluted earnings per share in the range of about $2.06 to $2.18.\\\" Apple will provide live streaming of its Q1 2010 financial results conference call utilizing QuickTime®, Apple\\\'s standards-based technology for live and on-demand audio and video streaming. The live webcast will begin at 2:00 p.m. PST on January 25, 2010 at www.apple.com/quicktime/qtv/earningsq110/ and will also be available for replay for approximately two weeks thereafter. *Retrospective Adoption of Amended Accounting Standards On September 23, 2009, the Financial Accounting Standards Board ratified Emerging Issues Task Force (EITF) Issue 08-1 and EITF Issue 09-3, resulting in the issuance of accounting standard updates ASU 2009-13 and ASU 2009-14. Apple was required to adopt the new accounting standards no later than the first quarter of fiscal 2011. Apple elected to adopt the new standards during the first quarter of fiscal 2010, as reflected in its Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q for the quarter ended December 26, 2009, which was filed with the SEC on January 25, 2010. The Company also filed a Form 10-K/A to amend its Form 10-K for the year ended September 26, 2009 solely to reflect the retrospective adoption of the new accounting standards to the periods presented in that report. Additionally, Apple filed a Form 8-K that included selected quarterly financial schedules reflecting the impact of retrospective adoption of the new accounting standards and reconciling the application of old and new accounting principles to historical income statements, balance sheets, cash flow from operations, deferred revenue and summary data information. These financial schedules will also be available on the Company\\\'s website at www.apple.com/investor. The new accounting principles result in the Company\\\'s recognition of substantially all of the revenue and product cost for iPhone and Apple TV when those products are delivered to customers. Under historical accounting principles, the Company was required to account for sales of both iPhone and Apple TV using subscription accounting because the Company indicated it might from time to time provide future unspecified software upgrades and features for those products free of charge. Under subscription accounting, revenue and associated product cost of sales for iPhone and Apple TV were deferred at the time of sale and recognized on a straight-line basis over each product\\\'s estimated economic life. This resulted in the deferral of significant amounts of revenue and cost of sales related to iPhone and Apple TV. Because Apple began selling both iPhone and Apple TV in fiscal 2007, the Company retrospectively adopted the new accounting principles as if the new accounting principles had been applied in all prior periods. Consequently, the financial results of each quarter from fiscal 2007 through fiscal 2009 have been revised. The Company believes retrospective adoption provides analysts and investors the most comparable and useful financial information and better reflects the underlying performance of the Company\\\'s business. For additional information refer to the \\\"Explanatory Note\\\" in Apple\\\'s Amendment No. 1 to its Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended September 26, 2009. This press release contains forward-looking statements including without limitation those about the Company\\\'s estimated revenue and earnings per share. These statements involve risks and uncertainties, and actual results may differ. Risks and uncertainties include without limitation the effect of competitive and economic factors, and the Company\\\'s reaction to those factors, on consumer and business buying decisions with respect to the Company\\\'s products; continued competitive pressures in the marketplace; the ability of the Company to deliver to the marketplace and stimulate customer demand for new programs, products, and technological innovations on a timely basis; the effect that product transitions, changes in product pricing or mix, and/or increases in component costs could have on the Company\\\'s gross margin; the inventory risk associated with the Company\\\'s need to order or commit to order product components in advance of customer orders; the continued availability on acceptable terms, or at all, of certain components and services essential to the Company\\\'s business currently obtained by the Company from sole or limited sources; the effect that the Company\\\'s dependency on manufacturing and logistics services provided by third parties may have on the quality, quantity or cost of products manufactured or services rendered; the Company\\\'s reliance on the availability of third-party digital content and applications; the potential impact of a finding that the Company has infringed on the intellectual property rights of others; the Company\\\'s dependency on the performance of distributors and other resellers of the Company\\\'s products; the effect that product and service quality problems could have on the Company\\\'s sales and operating profits; the Company\\\'s reliance on sole service providers for iPhone in certain countries; the continued service and availability of key executives and employees; war, terrorism, public health issues, and other circumstances that could disrupt supply, delivery, or demand of products; potential litigation from the matters investigated by the special committee of the board of directors and the restatement of the Company\\\'s consolidated financial statements; and unfavorable results of other legal proceedings. More information on potential factors that could affect the Company\\\'s financial results is included from time to time in the Company\\\'s public reports filed with the SEC, including the Company\\\'s Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended September 26, 2009 and its Form 10-Q for the quarter ended December 26, 2009. The Company assumes no obligation to update any forward-looking statements or information, which speak as of their respective dates. Apple ignited the personal computer revolution in the 1970s with the Apple II and reinvented the personal computer in the 1980s with the Macintosh. Today, Apple continues to lead the industry in innovation with its award-winning computers, OS X operating system and iLife and professional applications. Apple is also spearheading the digital media revolution with its iPod portable music and video players and iTunes online store, and has entered the mobile phone market with its revolutionary iPhone. © 2010 Apple Inc. All rights reserved. Apple, the Apple logo, Mac, Mac OS, Macintosh, iPhone, Apple TV and QuickTime are trademarks of Apple. Other company and product names may be trademarks of their respective owners. UNAUDITED CONDENSED CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF OPERATIONS (In millions, except share amounts which are reflected in thousands and per share amounts) Three Months Ended December 26, 2009 (2) December 27, 2008 (2) Net sales $ 15,683 $ 11,880 Cost of sales (1) 9,272 7,373 Gross margin 6,411 4,507 Operating expenses: Research and development (1) 398 315 Selling, general and administrative (1) 1,288 1,091 Total operating expenses 1,686 1,406 Operating income 4,725 3,101 Other income and expense 33 158 Income before provision for income taxes 4,758 3,259 Provision for income taxes 1,380 1,004 Net income $ 3,378 $ 2,255 Earnings per common share: Basic $ 3.74 $ 2.54 Diluted $ 3.67 $ 2.50 Shares used in computing earnings per share: Basic 903,542 889,142 Diluted 919,783 901,494 (1) Includes stock-based compensation expense as follows: Cost of sales $ 37 $ 28 Research and development $ 74 $ 60 Selling, general and administrative $ 94 $ 82 (2) In September 2009, the Financial Accounting Standards Board amended the accounting principles related to revenue recognition for arrangements with multiple deliverables and arrangements that include software elements. Apple adopted the new accounting principles on a retrospective basis during the first quarter of 2010. The new accounting principles significantly change how Apple accounts for certain revenue arrangements that include both hardware and software elements. The impact of the new accounting principles is reflected for all periods included above. For additional information refer to the \\\"Explanatory Note\\\" in Apple\\\'s Amendment No. 1 to the Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended September 26, 2009. UNAUDITED CONDENSED CONSOLIDATED BALANCE SHEETS (In millions, except share amounts) December 26, 2009 (1) September 26, 2009 (1) ASSETS: Current assets: Cash and cash equivalents $ 7,609 $ 5,263 Shortterm marketable securities 17,187 18,201 Accounts receivable, less allowances of $54 and $52, respectively 3,090 3,361 Inventories 576 455 Deferred tax assets 1,180 1,135 Other current assets 3,690 3,140 Total current assets 33,332 31,555 Longterm marketable securities 15,024 10,528 Property, plant and equipment, net 3,115 2,954 Goodwill 253 206 Acquired intangible assets, net 241 247 Other assets 1,961 2,011 Total assets $ 53,926 $ 47,501 LIABILITIES AND SHAREHOLDERS\\\' EQUITY: Current liabilities: Accounts payable $ 6,511 $ 5,601 Accrued expenses 3,996 3,852 Deferred revenue 2,590 2,053 Total current liabilities 13,097 11,506 Deferred revenue – non-current 922 853 Other non-current liabilities 4,139 3,502 Total liabilities 18,158 15,861 Commitments and contingencies Shareholders\\\' equity: Common stock, no par value; 1,800,000,000 shares authorized; 906,282,182 and 899,805,500 shares issued and outstanding, respectively 8,962 8,210 Retained earnings 26,695 23,353 Accumulated other comprehensive income 111 77 Total shareholders\\\' equity 35,768 31,640 Total liabilities and shareholders\\\' equity $ 53,926 $ 47,501 (1) In September 2009, the Financial Accounting Standards Board amended the accounting principles related to revenue recognition for arrangements with multiple deliverables and arrangements that include software elements. Apple adopted the new accounting principles on a retrospective basis during the first quarter of 2010. The new accounting principles significantly change how Apple accounts for certain revenue arrangements that include both hardware and software elements. The impact of the new accounting principles is reflected for all periods included above. For additional information refer to the \\\"Explanatory Note\\\" in Apple\\\'s Amendment No. 1 to the Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended September 26, 2009. UNAUDITED CONDENSED CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF CASH FLOWS (In millions) Three Months Ended December 26, 2009 (1) December 27, 2008 (1) Cash and cash equivalents, beginning of the period $ 5,263 $ 11,875 Operating activities: Net income 3,378 2,255 Adjustments to reconcile net income to cash generated by operating activities: Depreciation, amortization and accretion 209 168 Stock-based compensation expense 205 170 Deferred income tax expense 425 276 Loss on disposition of property, plant and equipment 6 7 Changes in operating assets and liabilities: Accounts receivable, net 271 226 Inventories (121) 113 Other current assets (517) 1,097 Other assets 47 7 Accounts payable 956 (767) Deferred revenue 606 200 Other liabilities 316 186 Cash generated by operating activities 5,781 3,938 Investing activities: Purchases of marketable securities (12,922) (13,082) Proceeds from maturities of marketable securities 6,216 2,226 Proceeds from sales of marketable securities 3,199 2,668 Purchases of other long-term investments (6) (38) Payment for acquisition of property, plant and equipment (376) (339) Payment for acquisition of intangible assets (5) (14) Other (64) (60) Cash used in investing activities (3,958) (8,639) Financing activities: Proceeds from issuance of common stock 374 77 Excess tax benefits from stock-based compensation 252 19 Cash used to net share settle equity awards (103) (34) Cash generated by financing activities 523 62 Increase/(decrease) in cash and cash equivalents 2,346 (4,639) Cash and cash equivalents, end of the period $ 7,609 $ 7,236 Supplemental cash flow disclosure: Cash paid for income taxes, net $ 980 $ 550 (1) In September 2009, the Financial Accounting Standards Board amended the accounting principles related to revenue recognition for arrangements with multiple deliverables and arrangements that include software elements. Apple adopted the new accounting principles on a retrospective basis during the first quarter of 2010. The new accounting principles significantly change how Apple accounts for certain revenue arrangements that include both hardware and software elements. The impact of the new accounting principles is reflected for all periods included above. For additional information refer to the \\\"Explanatory Note\\\" in Apple\\\'s Amendment No. 1 to the Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended September 26, 2009. Apple Inc. Q1 2010 Unaudited Summary Data (1) Q4 2009 Q1 2009 Q1 2010 Sequential Change Year/Year Change Operating Segments CPU Units K Revenue $M CPU Units K Revenue $M CPU Units K Revenue $M CPU Units Revenue CPU Units Revenue Americas 1,252 $5,236 912 $5,301 1,187 $6,092 - 5% 16% 30% 15% Europe 761 3,235 795 3,585 1,068 5,024 40% 55% 34% 40% Japan 79 634 99 498 105 783 33% 24% 6% 57% Asia Pacific 291 1,061 203 750 313 1,813 8% 71% 54% 142% Retail 670 2,041 515 1,746 689 1,971 3% - 3% 34% 13% Total Operating Segments 3,053 $12,207 2,524 $11,880 3,362 $15,683 10% 28% 33% 32% Sequential Change Year/Year Change Product Summary Units K Revenue $M Units K Revenue $M Units K Revenue $M Units Revenue Units Revenue Desktops (2) 787 $1,089 728 $1,045 1,234 $1,692 57% 55% 70% 62% Portables (3) 2,266 2,891 1,796 2,520 2,128 2,758 - 6% - 5% 18% 9% Subtotal CPUs 3,053 3,980 2,524 3,565 3,362 4,450 10% 12% 33% 25% iPod 10,177 1,563 22,727 3,371 20,970 3,391 106% 117% - 8% 1% Other Music Related Products and Services (4) 1,018 1,011 1,164 14% 15% iPhone and Related Products and Services (5) 7,367 4,606 4,363 2,940 8,737 5,578 19% 21% 100% 90% Peripherals and Other Hardware 391 387 469 20% 21% Software, Service and Other Sales 649 606 631 - 3% 4% Total Apple $12,207 $11,880 $15,683 28% 32% (1) In September 2009, the Financial Accounting Standards Board amended the accounting principles related to revenue recognition for arrangements with multiple deliverables and arrangements that include software elements. Apple adopted the new accounting principles on a retrospective basis during the first quarter of 2010. The new accounting principles significantly change how Apple accounts for certain revenue arrangements that include both hardware and software elements. The impact of the new accounting principles is reflected for all periods above. For additional information refer to the \\\"Explanatory Note\\\" in Apple\\\'s Amendment No. 1 to the Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended September 26, 2009. (2) Includes iMac, Mac mini, Mac Pro and Xserve product lines. (3) Includes MacBook, MacBook Air and MacBook Pro product lines. (4) Consists of iTunes Store sales, iPod services, and Apple-branded and third-party iPod accessories. (5) Units consist of iPhone handset sales; Revenue is derived from handset sales, carrier agreements, and Apple-branded and third-party iPhone accessories. K = Units in thousands $M = Amounts in millions SOURCE Apple RELATED LINKS http://www.apple.com

Bank of America to Repay Entire $45 Billion in TARP to U.S. Taxpayers
Company to Increase Capital, Enhancing Tier 1 Common Capital Ratio

CHARLOTTE, N.C., Dec. 2 /PRNewswire/ -- Bank of America today announced that it will repay U.S. taxpayers their entire $45 billion investment provided under the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP). The repayment will be made after the completion of a securities offering (see below). (Logo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20050720/CLW086LOGO-b ) To date, Bank of America has paid $2.54 billion in dividends to the U.S. Treasury on the TARP investment. Repaying TARP will save the company approximately $3.6 billion in annual dividend costs from the TARP investment. \\\"We appreciate the critical role that the U.S. government played last fall in helping to stabilize financial markets, and we are pleased to be able to fully repay the investment, with interest,\\\" said Kenneth D. Lewis, chief executive officer and president. \\\"As America\\\'s largest bank, we have a responsibility to make good on the taxpayers\\\' investment, and our record shows that we have been able to fulfill that commitment while continuing to lend. We believe that this is good news, not only for the U.S. taxpayer and our company, but for the country as it is a milestone indicating that public policy has succeeded in helping our industry and the economy begin to recover. \\\"Adding TARP to our capital has allowed Bank of America to continue to support the economy. In the 12 months since the government first made its investment in Bank of America, our company originated $760 billion in new credit, or approximately $3 billion per business day,\\\" Lewis added. \\\"Importantly, this includes our leadership role in financing home ownership, helping more than 1.54 million customers purchase a new home or refinance their existing mortgages and another 423,000 homeowners modify their loans to avoid foreclosure.\\\" So far this year, Bank of America has extended more than $12 billion in credit to small-business customers and assisted more than 49,000 small business card clients in improving their cash flows by modifying their payment structures. The repayment of TARP is the latest in a series of actions taken to reduce Bank of America\\\'s reliance on government assistance. Other actions include: * Paying the U.S. government $425 million to terminate a term sheet that would have guaranteed up to $118 billion in assets, if a final agreement had been reached. * Opting out of the Temporary Liquidity Guarantee Program (TLGP) in September. * Exiting the Term Auction Facility (TAF) in the summer of 2009. * Eliminating borrowings from the Federal Reserve\\\'s Term Securities Lending Facility (TSLF) and Primary Dealer Credit Facility (PDCF). * Announcing plans to exit the Transaction Account Guarantee Program (TAGP) effective Jan. 1, 2010. * Increasing Tier 1 Common capital by approximately $40 billion in the second quarter of 2009. * Issuing more than $10 billion in non-government-backed debt in the public markets in 2009. Under terms of the authorization from the U.S. Treasury and banking regulators to repay the $45 billion investment made under TARP, Bank of America will repurchase all 600,000 shares of the company\\\'s Fixed Rate Cumulative Perpetual Preferred Stock, Series N; all 400,000 shares of the company\\\'s Fixed Rate Cumulative Perpetual Preferred Stock, Series Q; and all 800,000 shares of the company\\\'s Fixed Rate Cumulative Perpetual Preferred Stock, Series R. The shares were issued to the U.S. Treasury as part of TARP. Bank of America is not exercising its right to repurchase the related warrants at this time. Bank of America plans to repay the $45 billion in TARP funds using $26.2 billion in excess liquidity and $18.8 billion in proceeds from the sale of \\\"common equivalent securities.\\\" The $18.8 billion issuance of \\\"common equivalent securities\\\" would be treated as Tier 1 Common capital. Shareholders would be asked at a special meeting to be held within 105 days of issuance to approve an increase in the authorized shares outstanding in order to allow the \\\"common equivalent securities\\\" to be converted into common stock. The \\\"common equivalent securities\\\" carry warrants to buy a total of 60 million shares of common stock at $0.01 per share and other benefits if shareholders do not approve an increase in authorized common shares. In addition, Bank of America agreed to increase equity by $4 billion through asset sales to be approved by the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve and contracted for by June 30, 2010. To the extent those asset sales are not completed by the end of 2010, the company agreed it would raise a commensurate amount of common equity. Bank of America also agreed to raise up to approximately $1.7 billion through the issuance of restricted stock in lieu of a portion of incentive cash compensation to certain Bank of America associates as part of their normal year-end incentive payments. Year-end incentive payments are dependent on the performance of the company, business units and individuals and have not yet been determined. This initiative also aligns associate interests with the company\\\'s performance. After the TARP repayment and these initiatives, the company\\\'s Tier 1 Capital ratio would be 11.0 percent, pro forma based on the September 30, 2009 ratio of 12.5 percent. The Tier 1 Common capital ratio would be 8.5 percent, pro forma based on the September 30, 2009 ratio of 7.3 percent. The company will continue to have strong liquidity. Repurchase of TARP preferred stock is expected to reduce income available to common shareholders in the fourth quarter by $4.1 billion, as the book value of the preferred is less than the amount paid. Bank of America Bank of America is one of the world\\\'s largest financial institutions, serving individual consumers, small- and middle-market businesses and large corporations with a full range of banking, investing, asset management and other financial and risk management products and services. The company provides unmatched convenience in the United States, serving approximately 53 million consumer and small business relationships with 6,000 retail banking offices, more than 18,000 ATMs and award-winning online banking with more than 29 million active users. Bank of America is among the world\\\'s leading wealth management companies and is a global leader in corporate and investment banking and trading across a broad range of asset classes serving corporations, governments, institutions and individuals around the world. Bank of America offers industry-leading support to more than 4 million small business owners through a suite of innovative, easy-to-use online products and services. The company serves clients in more than 150 countries. Bank of America Corporation stock (NYSE: BAC) is a component of the Dow Jones Industrial Average and is listed on the New York Stock Exchange. Forward-Looking Statements Bank of America and its management may make certain statements that constitute \\\"forward-looking statements\\\" within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These statements are not historical facts, but instead represent Bank of America\\\'s current expectations, plans or forecasts relating to the offering of \\\"common equivalent securities,\\\" the calling of a special shareholders\\\' meeting to approve an increase in authorized common shares, the level of preferred dividends, and pro forma capital ratios, the closing of the Columbia Management and First Republic sales, the possible sales of additional assets and other similar matters. These statements are not guarantees of future results or performance and involve certain risks, uncertainties and assumptions that are difficult to predict and are often beyond Bank of America\\\'s control. Actual outcomes and results may differ materially from those expressed in, or implied by, any of these forward-looking statements. The Company has filed a registration statement including a prospectus with the SEC for the offering to which this communication relates. Before you invest, you should read the prospectus in that registration statement and other documents the Company has filed with the SEC for more complete information about the Company and this offering. You may obtain these documents for free by visiting EDGAR on the SEC Web site at www.sec.gov. Alternatively, Bank of America Corporation, any underwriter or any dealer participating in the offering will arrange to send you the prospectus if you request it by calling Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith Incorporated at (866) 500-5408. www.bankofamerica.com SOURCE Bank of America

Healthcare Scoring System Allows Hospitals To Increase Charity Care
Medlytix clients surpass half-billion-dollar milestone

ATLANTA, Dec. 16 /PRNewswire/ -- Medlytix, a national healthcare consulting firm, reported success this week in reaching a key half-billion dollar milestone - the total amount of money that its hospital clients have provided in financial assistance to more than a half-million patients nationwide by doing a better job of properly classifying charity care - in less than two years. \\\"We\\\'re proud that each of these hospitals enhanced their bottom lines and still were able to significantly increase their level of charity care contributions,\\\" said Medlytix CEO Arvind Krishnaswami. \\\"This is a win-win for the hospitals and the communities that they serve.\\\" Medlytix employs predictive sciences and a custom-scoring solution that identifies a hospital\\\'s most likely \\\"presumptive charity-care\\\" patients. Presumptive charity care is the process of proactively classifying patients as charity-eligible on the basis of limited financial information. Under new federal IRS rules, hospitals are required to separate their delinquent patient accounts into two categories: charity care or bad debt. Thus, hospitals run the risk of writing off thousands of dollars from misclassified patients who may have been able to pay their medical bills if given enough time and assistance. A hospital may still pursue payment from a bad-debt account but forgoes any payment from a patient designated as charity care. In the past, hospitals have based charity-care decisions more on intuition because of little to no financial information provided by their patients. Prompted by new regulations and increasing economic pressures, more of these hospitals are exploring independent financial scoring systems, similar to those historically used by banks and the auto industry. While many of these systems involve generic scoring solutions developed from national population datasets, Medlytix utilizes a customized model that is much more comprehensive and accurate. Its custom scoring solution draws vital information from a combination of credit data, demographic data and internal hospital financial files. \\\"Our charity-care score provides a much clearer picture of patient presumptive charity because of the amount of data used to develop the model,\\\" Krishnaswami said. \\\"Also, it is highly defensible because it is custom-built for each hospital.\\\" A leader in global information solutions, Equifax Inc., partners with Medlytix in its healthcare division to provide effective and impactful presumptive-charity scoring solutions to hospitals today. \\\"Our healthcare-specific scores help medical-care providers to effectively direct patients toward the charity application process,\\\" said Dann Adams, president of Equifax Consumer Information Solutions. \\\"The goal with Medlytix is to have a process for addressing these situations where the patients\\\' necessary documentation is lacking. Medlytix\\\'s solution is state-of-the-art in determining presumptive charity for those patients.\\\" In addition to its high degree of effectiveness, Medlytix\\\'s custom charity-care scoring model provides an objective, unbiased methodology that is highly defensible under an audit or review of discriminatory practices, especially when carried out on the back end of patient service. \\\"In fact, we recommend that hospitals use our custom methodology well into their revenue cycle, just prior to making a bad-debt classification decision,\\\" Krishnaswami said. \\\"Numerous case studies and our own clients prove that utilizing scoring at the point of service is much less effective from a cost-benefit standpoint.\\\" About Medlytix (www.Medlytix.com) Medlytix, an Atlanta-based healthcare consulting and technology company, utilizes predictive sciences, technology and business expertise to arm hospitals and other healthcare providers with powerful yet cost-effective revenue cycle systems. Medlytix custom-designs, develops and implements scientific-based analytical solutions for healthcare organizations throughout the United States. The Medlytix executive team initially built its national reputation for the design and implementation of predictive modeling and scoring solutions in the credit bureau industry as well as with major financial, auto, insurance and mortgage lenders. Following its widely recognized success, the company entered the healthcare field to extend the same high level of expertise to not-for-profit hospitals. About Equifax (www.Equifax.com) Equifax empowers businesses and consumers with information they can trust. A global leader in information solutions, Equifax leverages one of the largest sources of consumer and commercial data, along with advanced analytics and proprietary technology, to create customized insights that enrich both the performance of businesses and the lives of consumers. With a strong heritage of innovation and leadership, Equifax continuously delivers innovative solutions with the highest integrity and reliability. Businesses - large and small - rely on Equifax for consumer and business credit intelligence, portfolio management, fraud detection, decisioning technology, marketing tools, and much more. Equifax empowers individual consumers to manage their personal credit information, protect their identity, and maximize their financial well-being. Headquartered in Atlanta, Equifax Inc. operates in the U.S. and 14 other countries throughout North America, Latin America and Europe. Equifax is a member of Standard & Poor\\\'s (S&P) 500® Index. Its common stock is traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol EFX. SOURCE Medlytix

83 Percent of U.S. Adults Fail Test on Nation's Founding
Nationwide Survey Shows Stunning Knowledge Void, Yet Strong Desire to Learn More

WASHINGTON, Dec. 2 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Who cares about the American Revolution? Should something that happened more than 200 years ago matter today? These are among the questions raised by a recent national survey, sponsored by The American Revolution Center, which revealed an alarming lack of knowledge of our nation\\\'s founding history, despite near universal agreement on the importance of this knowledge. The report, conducted in the summer of 2009 among a demographically representative random sample of U.S. adults, is the first national survey of adult knowledge of the American Revolution and its ongoing legacy. It reveals that Americans highly value, but vastly overrate, their knowledge of the Revolutionary period and its significance. Asked to grade themselves on their knowledge, 89 percent believed they could pass a basic test on the American Revolution. However, 83 percent failed when tested on the beliefs, freedoms, and liberties established during the Revolution. \\\"The American Revolution defined what it means to be an American. It forged those principles that unite us as a nation,\\\" says Dr. Bruce Cole, president and CEO of The American Revolution Center. \\\"Unfortunately, those principles are fading from memory.\\\" This is alarming, Dr. Cole explains, because rights and values undefined and misunderstood cannot be defended or taught to future generations. \\\"Knowledge of the ideas upon which our nation is built is essential, to maintain the relevance and vibrancy of our government,\\\" he says. \\\"Many people are unaware that the everyday freedoms and liberties they enjoy - reading newspaper editorials, expressing a dissenting opinion while attending a public meeting, or worshipping at a religious institution of their choice - are the legacy of the American Revolution. For future generations to continue to enjoy these freedoms, we must know and preserve the promise of the American Revolution.\\\" Some noteworthy findings from the report, titled \\\"The American Revolution. Who Cares? Americans are Yearning to Learn, Failing to Know,\\\" include the following: * Many more Americans remember that Michael Jackson sang \\\"Beat It\\\" than know that the Bill of Rights is part of the Constitution. * 60 percent of Americans can correctly identify the number of children in reality-TV show couple Jon and Kate Gosselin\\\'s household (eight), but more than one-third do not know the century in which the American Revolution took place (18th). Half of those surveyed believe the Civil War (1861-1865), Emancipation Proclamation (1863), or War of 1812 occurred before the American Revolution (1775-1783). * More than 50 percent of Americans surveyed wrongly attributed the quote, \\\"From each according to his ability, to each according to his needs\\\" to George Washington, Thomas Paine, or President Barack Obama, when it is in fact a quote from Karl Marx, author of \\\"The Communist Manifesto.\\\" Fortunately, the survey revealed that more than 90 percent of Americans - across all major demographic groups - think it is important for U.S. citizens to know the history and principles of the American Revolution, and that this knowledge be taught in schools. The findings are a call-to-action for The American Revolution Center and for its efforts to address this \\\"historical amnesia.\\\" The non-partisan, not-for-profit organization plans to construct The Museum of the American Revolution in historic Philadelphia. This will be the first national museum to tell the entire story of the American Revolution and its enduring legacy. The organization already has launched a website with informational resources on the American Revolution, offering lesson plans and other educational materials. For more information about the survey, or about the mission and activities of The American Revolution Center, visit www.AmericanRevolutionCenter.org. SOURCE The American Revolution Center

Nations Capping Carbon Emissions Mocked as 'Suckers' at Climate Change Conference... With Suckers

COPENHAGEN, Dec. 16 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Hundreds of candy suckers are being distributed at the U.N. climate change conference in Copenhagen, Denmark today to mock nations that are imposing harsh limits on their carbon emissions at great economic cost for little or no environmental benefit. The group distributing them is the Washington, DC-based free market National Center for Public Policy Research. The suckers bear the caption \\\"Sucker for CO2 Limits.\\\" \\\"They say a sucker is born every minute, and looking around here, I\\\'d have to say they\\\'re right,\\\" said David A. Ridenour, vice president of the National Center for Public Policy Research. \\\"In the midst of the worst global economic downturn in decades, delegates are actually pressing for additional commitments for carbon reductions that would sap economic strength further.\\\" The National Center contends that efforts to reduce emissions have not only proven expensive, but ineffective in reducing emissions. \\\"Despite spending many billions on their climate programs, Europe\\\'s emissions steadily rose until the global recession hit. In fact, they grew by 1.6% between 2003 and 2006 while the U.S.\\\'s grew by just .6% during the same period,\\\" said Ridenour, who is leading the group\\\'s delegation to the conference. \\\"Making matters worse is that the scientific house of cards upon which these climate policies were built seems to be collapsing following revelations that some key scientists were cooking the books.\\\" The National Center\\\'s David Ridenour, Tom Borelli and Deneen Borelli are in Copenhagen for the conference. Interviews may be arranged. The National Center for Public Policy Research is a non-partisan, non-profit educational foundation based in Washington, DC. It can be reached online at http://www.nationalcenter.org and is a truly independent think-tank, receiving 94 percent of its funding through hundreds of thousands of individual gifts. Contact: David Almasi at (202) 543-4110 or Judy Kent at (703) 759-7476 or cop15@nationalcenter.org SOURCE National Center for Public Policy Research

Health Care Provisions Still Soft on Illegal Aliens
Amendments Expected to Target Issue

WASHINGTON, Dec. 2 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Assurances that the two health-care reform bills would not benefit illegal aliens are not accurate. A new report from the Center for Immigration Studies examines in detail the immigration-related provisions of both the House-passed HR 3962 and the bill now being debated in the Senate, HR 3590. The report concludes that the bills, in their current form, would indeed give illegal aliens access to taxpayer-funded health care well beyond emergency medical treatment. The report, \\\"Immigration-Related Provisions of Senate and House Health Reform Bills,\\\" is authored by CIS Fellow James R. Edwards, Jr. It is online at http://cis.org/immigration-related-health-provisions. Key findings include: * HR 3962 ensures illegal alien access to the exchange and public option. HR 3590 states illegal immigrants are excluded from these. * Both bills ostensibly bar illegal aliens from receiving the premium subsidy, and both bills use some form of eligibility verification for the subsidy. * Both bills expand Medicaid eligibility. Both bills lack verification requirements based on citizenship or immigrant status. Both contain serious loopholes to enroll illegal aliens easily into Medicaid. HR 3962 automatically covers anchor babies. * The eligibility verification process in each bill falls woefully short of protecting taxpayer liability to cover or subsidize people living unlawfully in the United States. Both the House and Senate bills\\\' verification processes will encourage large-scale fraud and abuse. * The Senate bill exempts illegal aliens from the mandate that everyone have health insurance or else face a tax penalty. This perverse exemption treats illegal aliens better than the bill treats American citizens. The Center for Immigration Studies is an independent research institution that examines the impact of immigration on the United States. SOURCE Center for Immigration Studies

Bank of America Board of Directors Elects Brian Moynihan CEO
Moynihan to Assume New Office Effective January 1, 2010

CHARLOTTE, N.C., Dec. 16 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- The Bank of America Board of Directors today elected Brian T. Moynihan as chief executive officer and president of the company. He will assume the office and join the Board of Directors following the retirement of Kenneth D. Lewis on December 31, 2009. Moynihan, 50, has held senior leadership positions at Bank of America representing experience across virtually all business lines. He currently is president of Consumer and Small Business Banking, which has relationships with about 53 million households and small businesses across the United States. \\\"Brian\\\'s wide range of experience, his relationships inside and outside of the company, and his demonstrated ability to understand business dynamics and effect constructive change made him the best person for the position,\\\" said Dr. Walter E. Massey, chairman of Bank of America, who led a search that considered both internal and external candidates. \\\"Brian has been the top executive leading wealth management, corporate and investment banking and consumer banking. His work with international clients in our capital markets businesses has given him broad knowledge of and perspective on global financial services markets. He has excelled in every role, earning the loyalty and respect of customers and associates alike. In short, Brian brings the right combination of knowledge, experience and leadership to achieve all of our company\\\'s goals for the future. \\\"While we considered external candidates,\\\" Massey continued, \\\"the Board decided after listening to shareholders, regulators and others that Brian\\\'s experience was commensurate with or better than any of those candidates, and he offered the advantage of a smooth transition. Bank of America has a talented team, and one of our principal jobs as directors is to support that team as it goes about creating value for all of our constituencies.\\\" Moynihan, who was named to his current role earlier this year, joined FleetBoston Financial (a predecessor to Bank of America) in 1993. He subsequently rose to senior positions at that company. Fleet was acquired by Bank of America in 2004. \\\"I am honored to have the opportunity to lead this important company,\\\" said Moynihan. \\\"We have everything we need at Bank of America to be the best financial services company in the world. We have leading positions in every important sector and market. We have capabilities that I believe match or exceed all our competitors. We have the right values and culture, and we have an unbelievably dedicated management team and associate base. \\\"What we need to do now is very simple,\\\" Moynihan continued. \\\"We need to execute. This company has a long tradition of operational excellence and strong execution. My goal is to refocus our efforts and attention on those core capabilities that will make us the best financial services firm in the world. \\\"Clearly, customers and clients have benefited from the franchise Ken Lewis, Hugh McColl and others have built over the decades. Our business model has also worked for shareholders. Before the crisis, we were the most efficient banking company with our business mix in the country, and we will see that as a target going forward. I believe we have the scale, capital, liquidity and diversity of income that all support safety and soundness. \\\"But as the world has changed, we must continue to be flexible and build on our strong tradition, and change to meet our customers\\\' needs,\\\" Moynihan said. \\\"We think of this not as changing the business model, but changing the way we do business. We are committed to fairness and transparency as we seek to provide the best financial products and services in the world.\\\" Since taking over Consumer and Small Business Banking last August, Moynihan has spearheaded the introduction of a new Basic Credit Card, the freezing of credit card rates and the amending of overdraft policies to benefit customers. Moynihan will succeed Lewis, who has served as Bank of America\\\'s chief executive officer since 2001. Lewis recently announced that he will retire from the company after a 40-year career on December 31, 2009. \\\"I have worked closely with Brian Moynihan for six years, and I believe he is the right person to lead our company forward,\\\" Lewis said. \\\"He is a decisive leader and an exacting manager. He understands the U.S. and global financial services markets, and is extremely adept at the art of managing risk and reward. He knows this company and its capabilities as well as, if not better than, anyone. Most importantly, he cares deeply about our customers, our shareholders, our associates and the communities we serve. I applaud the Board\\\'s choice — Brian is the perfect leader to bring our many market-leading businesses together, to build on our long-standing culture of operational excellence, and to make sure our focus stays 100 percent on our customers and clients as we move ahead.\\\" About Brian Moynihan Brian Moynihan joined FleetBoston Financial in April 1993. He was promoted to lead Corporate Strategy and Development and then went on to lead Global Wealth and Investment Management at the company. Following Bank of America’s 2004 merger with FleetBoston Financial, he joined Bank of America as president of Global Wealth and Investment Management, overseeing the delivery of industry-leading financial services to individual and institutional investors, commercial businesses and large corporations, financial institutions and government entities across the United States and in more than 150 countries. From 2007 to 2009, Moynihan served as president of Global Corporate and Investment Banking, leading a business delivering a wide range of financial services products and services to more than 140,000 clients around the world, ranging from small, high-growth and middle-market companies to large multinational corporations, government entities, financial sponsors and institutional investors. Moynihan is a member of the bank’s executive management team, and chairs Bank of America’s Global Diversity and Inclusion Council. Moynihan is a graduate of Brown University and the University of Notre Dame Law School. He serves on the boards of directors of YouthBuild Boston and the Boys and Girls Clubs of Boston. He is a former chairman of the Travelers Aid Society of Rhode Island and Providence Haitian Project, Inc. About Kenneth D. Lewis Lewis was named chief executive officer in 2001, succeeding Hugh L. McColl, Jr., who served as CEO from 1983 to 2001. Lewis joined North Carolina National Bank (NCNB, predecessor to NationsBank and Bank of America) in 1969 as a credit analyst in Charlotte. After serving in a variety of leadership roles across the company, he was named chief executive officer and president of Bank of America in April of 2001. Lewis was born in 1947 in Meridian, Mississippi. He earned a bachelor\\\'s degree in finance from Georgia State University, and is a graduate of the Executive Program at Stanford University. Lewis is the only two-time winner of American Banker newspaper\\\'s \\\"Banker of the Year\\\" award (2002, 2008). He was named in 2007 as one of the 100 most influential people in the world by Time magazine. During Lewis\\\' tenure, Bank of America attracted millions of new customers and expanded existing relationships through the creation of new financial products, services, delivery channels and technologies, and by improving customer satisfaction significantly across every major line of business. Through selective acquisitions, Lewis garnered market-leading positions and opportunities for future growth for the bank in important markets and sectors of the financial services industry, including the Northeast and Midwest U.S. banking markets, private banking, card services, home lending, wealth management and investment banking. Under Lewis\\\' leadership, Bank of America announced new 10-year, nationwide goals for community development lending and investing ($1.5 trillion) and philanthropic giving ($2 billion), and a $20 billion Environmental Initiative aimed at investing in the companies and technologies that are helping to create environmental and economic sustainability around the world. Bank of America Bank of America is one of the world\\\'s largest financial institutions, serving individual consumers, small- and middle-market businesses and large corporations with a full range of banking, investing, asset management and other financial and risk management products and services. The company provides unmatched convenience in the United States, serving approximately 53 million consumer and small business relationships with 6,000 retail banking offices, more than 18,000 ATMs and award-winning online banking with more than 29 million active users. Bank of America is among the world\\\'s leading wealth management companies and is a global leader in corporate and investment banking and trading across a broad range of asset classes serving corporations, governments, institutions and individuals around the world. Bank of America offers industry-leading support to more than 4 million small business owners through a suite of innovative, easy-to-use online products and services. The company serves clients in more than 150 countries. Bank of America Corporation stock (NYSE: BAC) is a component of the Dow Jones Industrial Average and is listed on the New York Stock Exchange. www.bankofamerica.com

Cyber Monday Online Sales Up 5 Percent vs. Year Ago to $887 Million to Match Heaviest Online Spending Day in History
Shopping from Work Accounts for More than Half of Cyber Monday Spending

RESTON, Va., Dec. 2 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- comScore (Nasdaq: SCOR), a leader in measuring the digital world, today reported holiday season retail e-commerce spending for the first 30 days of the November - December 2009 holiday season. For the holiday season-to-date, $12.26 billion has been spent online, marking a 3-percent increase versus the corresponding days last year. Cyber Monday reached $887 million in online spending, up 5 percent versus year ago, and matching the heaviest online spending day on record, December 9, 2008. (Logo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20080115/COMSCORELOGO) 2009 Holiday Season to Date vs. Corresponding Days* in 2008 ------------------------------------------------------ Non-Travel (Retail) Spending ---------------------------- Excludes Auctions and Large Corporate Purchases ----------------------------------------------- Total U.S. - Home/Work/University Locations ------------------------------------------- Source: comScore, Inc. ---------------------- Millions ($) ------------ Percent 2008 2009 Change ---- ---- ------- November 1 - 30 $11,870 $12,262 3% --------------- ------- ------- --- Thanksgiving Day (Nov. 26) $288 $318 10% -------------------------- ---- ---- --- Black Friday (Nov. 27) $534 $595 11% ---------------------- ---- ---- --- Weekend (Nov. 28-29) $769 $805 5% -------------------- ---- ---- --- Cyber Monday (Nov. 30) $834 $887 5% ---------------------- ---- ---- --- *Corresponding days based on corresponding shopping days (November 2 thru December 1, 2008) \\\"We\\\'ve seen an encouraging start to the online holiday shopping season and it would appear that retailers\\\' aggressive and early marketing efforts have so far succeeded in persuading consumers to open their wallets online,\\\" said comScore chairman Gian Fulgoni. \\\"Thanksgiving Day and Black Friday were atypically strong online sales days this year, and Cyber Monday has continued that trend by outperforming the season-to-date average growth rate and matching last year\\\'s record day of $887 million in online spending. Now, it will be important to see if spending continues to grow over the balance of the season -- because the heaviest spending day online typically occurs in mid-December.\\\" Cyber Monday Sales Growth Driven by Increase in Buyers Cyber Monday\\\'s 5-percent growth in sales versus year ago was driven primarily by an increase in the number of buyers, reflecting consumers\\\' increasing familiarity and comfort with online buying, while average spending per buyer was down slightly, presumably a result of economic constraints. Specifically, the number of online buyers grew 6 percent to 8.7 million, while the average dollars spent per buyer declined 2 percent to $102.19. Cyber Monday Spending Growth Breakdown -------------------------------------- Cyber Monday 2009 vs. Cyber Monday 2008 --------------------------------------- Total U.S. - Home/Work/University Locations ------------------------------------------- Source: comScore, Inc. ---------------------- Cyber Monday Cyber Monday Percent 2008 2009 Change ------------ ------------ ------- Dollar Sales ($ Millions) $846 $887 5% ------------------------- ---- ---- --- Buyers (Millions) 8.2 8.7 6% ------------------------- --- --- --- Dollars per buyer $103.72 $102.19 -1% ----------------- ------- ------- --- Buying at Work Continues to Drive Cyber Monday Sales On Cyber Monday this year, more than half of dollars spent online at U.S. Web sites originated from work computers (52.7 percent), representing a gain of 2.3 percentage points from last year. Buying from home comprised the majority of the remaining share (41.6 percent) while buying from international locations accounted for 5.8 percent. Cyber Monday Spending Growth Breakdown -------------------------------------- Cyber Monday 2009 vs. Cyber Monday 2008 --------------------------------------- Total U.S. - Home/Work/University Locations ------------------------------------------- Source: comScore, Inc. ---------------------- Point Cyber Monday 2008 Cyber Monday 2009 Change ----------------- ----------------- ------ Home (incl. University) 42.5% 41.6% -0.9 ------------ ---- ---- ---- Work 50.4% 52.7% 2.3 ---- ---- ---- --- International 7.1% 5.8% -1.3 ------------- --- --- ---- Total 100.0% 100.0% N/A ----- ----- ----- --- \\\"comScore data have shown that Cyber Monday online sales have always been driven by considerable buying activity from work locations,\\\" added Mr. Fulgoni. \\\"That pattern hasn\\\'t changed. After returning from the long Thanksgiving weekend with a lot of holiday shopping still ahead of them, many consumers tend to continue their holiday shopping from work. Whether to take advantage of the extensive Cyber Monday deals offered by retailers or to buy gifts away from the prying eyes of family members, this day has become an annual ritual for America\\\'s online holiday shoppers.\\\" About comScore comScore, Inc. (Nasdaq: SCOR) is a global leader in measuring the digital world and preferred source of digital marketing intelligence. For more information, please visit www.comscore.com/companyinfo. SOURCE comScore, Inc.

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