Speaking of Netcentives, the company went to Bankruptcy court on Nov. 15 and saw many of its assets placed on the auction block. Assets that were picked up by other concerns included the MaxMiles program, which provides consolidated frequent flyer activity through several Web sites, the popular ClickRewards program, which has earned members hundreds of millions of miles and points from shopping and other online activity, and the online shopping malls of both the Delta SkyMiles and United Mileage Plus programs.
So, what were companies paying for all of these mileage- and point-based businesses? The online shopping mall programs for SkyMiles and Mileage Plus were sold to the Princeton Entrepreneurial Group for an estimated $300,000; the MaxMiles program was sold to the Princeton Entrepreneurial Group for some $210,000 and the ClickRewards program (soft assets such as the member database, etc.) were sold to Charles River Consultants for $120,000.
Now, the bad news is that none of the acquiring companies have a history of being involved in the business of frequent flyers, which means they’ll either try to leverage the business or they will take what paper losses they can before scrapping the programs. Regardless, it’s a sad day at Netcentives and an even sadder day in the lives of the customers of these programs.