Deutsche Post Buys Stake in E-Stamp
The German post office, Deutsche Post, bought a 1.25 percent stake in San Mateo, Calif.-based E-Stamp Corp., a company that lets you buy U.S. postage stamps over the Internet and print them on a computer printer. DP joins other prominent E-Stamp investors, including Microsoft, AT&T Ventures and Compaq.
E-Stamp claims to have signed up 10,000 customers since Aug. 9, when it received approval from the U.S. Postal Service to sell stamps online.
According to E-Stamp, the company received $5 million in equity investments from subsidiaries of Deutsche Post and Deutsche Telekom. A DP spokesman said the German postal service hopes to offer similar electronic stamps in Germany within a year or so. The German manufacturer of stamp machines, Francotyp Postalia, is also an investor in E-Stamp.
The investment is part of DP’s strategy to get more involved in e-commerce, particularly consumer-based Internet sales, which it sees as a natural extension of its postal business. DP already has taken stakes in several e-commerce companies, including German software consulting and development firm GET Technologies AG.
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