Reuters to start financial MySpace | | Guardian Unlimited Business
Reuters is planning to launch its own version of MySpace this year - though its community website will not be aimed at teenagers. Instead, fund managers, traders and analysts are being targeted.
Reuters hopes to draw from the 70,000 subscribers of its messaging service as a starting point for its foray into the fast-growing sector of community websites.
"You will see us, later in the year, launch a version of MySpace for the financial services community," said the chief executive, Tom Glocer. "It won't have the latest hot videos and the 'why I am into Metallica and the Arctic Monkeys' blogs. Instead we are going to give our financial services users the ability to post their research or if they are traders, their trading models."
The website will also be exclusive to Reuters subscribers. "People don't want to have 100 friend requests from teenage girls in Florida if they are trading the credit derivatives market, but they probably are interested in being able to share research," said Mr Glocer.
Reuters has been quick to embrace online potential. Last year it posted one of its journalists to Second Life, where he reports on events within the virtual world. The company has sold advertising on the billboards outside its virtual headquarters within Second Life. "I would still put this strongly in the realm of experimentation but it's a nice controlled experiment that has probably paid for itself 10 times over in marketing," he said.
Reuters reported yesterday an 8% decline in annual trading profits - to £308m - as it invested in its business. Revenues were £2.56bn, up 4.8% on an underlying basis. Reuters said revenues would increase at least 6% this year.