Press Release

Source: Stamps.com

PhotoStamps Focusing on Most Popular Categories
Monday September 13, 8:07 am ET

LOS ANGELES, Sept. 13 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Stamps.comŽ (Nasdaq: STMP - News) today announced that it will focus on the top categories of its popular PhotoStamps product. The top two categories-babies and children, and pets and animals-will continue to be accepted on the PhotoStamps website. The PhotoStamps website will also continue to accept other popular categories of images including landscapes, nature, wildlife, business logos, and charity logos. Images that include adults or teens will no longer be accepted via the PhotoStamps website, but will continue to be accepted through trusted channels such as approved photographers or portrait studios.

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The public response to PhotoStamps has been very enthusiastic. More than a million individual PhotoStamps have been ordered since the service was launched on August 10th, and more than ninety percent of customers surveyed said they will order PhotoStamps again. Currently in a market test, PhotoStamps continues to respond to consumer demand while refining its processes. The market test of PhotoStamps is expected to continue through September 30, 2004.

"We are overwhelmed by the early success of PhotoStamps," said Stamps.com CEO Ken McBride. "Consumers have told us that PhotoStamps allow people to share memories -- from new parents sharing baby pictures to adoring pet owners sharing favorite images of their animals. We want to focus on what has been most successful to date and make appropriate changes to the product during our test phase."

McBride added, "We have limited the use of the product in certain categories in response to the abusive actions of a few people that went to great lengths to use the product in inappropriate ways. We want to preserve the essence of the product that tens of thousand of customers use in a fun, creative, and positive manner."

Business and charity applications of PhotoStamps have already proven to be very popular, with more than a hundred inquires to date regarding higher volume uses of PhotoStamps. Stamps.com plans to increase its efforts to expand higher volume business and charitable applications of PhotoStamps, while also continuing to enhance the availability of PhotoStamps to consumers.

About PhotoStamps

PhotoStamps is a PC Postage product brought to you by Stamps.com Inc., the leading provider of Internet-based postage services. In addition to providing the PhotoStamps product, Stamps.com PC Postage Service enables over 300,000 customers to print U.S. Postal Service-approved postage with just a PC, printer and Internet connection. The Company targets its PC Postage services to small businesses and home offices, and currently has partnerships with companies including Microsoft, CompUSA, EarthLink, HP, NCR, Office Depot, and Vendio.

"Safe Harbor" Statement under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995: This release may contain forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties. Important factors, including the Company's ability to complete its products and obtain regulatory approval, which could cause actual results to differ materially from those in the forward-looking statements, are detailed in filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission made from time to time by Stamps.com, including its Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2003, Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q, and Current Reports on Form 8-K. Stamps.com undertakes no obligation to release publicly any revisions to any forward-looking statements to reflect events or circumstances after the date hereof or to reflect the occurrence of unanticipated events.

Stamps.com, the Stamps.com logo, PhotoStamps, NetStamps and Hidden Postage are trademarks or registered trademarks of Stamps.com Inc. All other brands and names are property of their respective owners.

Press Release

Source: Stamps.com

Saving Endangered Species With World Wildlife Fund One PhotoStamp(TM) at a Time
Wednesday September 15, 8:02 am ET

LOS ANGELES, Sept. 15 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Stamps.comŽ (Nasdaq: STMP - News) is proud to announce an innovative and exciting program to help save endangered species through a partnership with World Wildlife Fund (WWF). Beginning tomorrow, Stamps.com will offer a series of endangered species PhotoStamps, with a percentage of sales benefiting WWF's conservation work around the world.

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For the Stamps.com launch of the endangered animal series, WWF will make available high-quality images of a giant panda, a one-horned rhino, a Bengal tiger, a lowland gorilla and an African elephant. Beginning September 16th, these PhotoStamps will be available online at www.photostamps.com. Customers can select the image of one of these animals, customize the border and postage amount, and then place their order online.

By purchasing WWF PhotoStamps, customers will help WWF to save endangered animals and their habitats. To get the program started, Stamps.com will donate half of the sale price for each sheet of WWF PhotoStamps sold from now through September 30 to the organization.

"There's tremendous excitement here about working with a leading cause like World Wildlife Fund. This is the first time that Stamps.com has partnered with a conservation organization," said Stamps.com CEO Ken McBride. "PhotoStamps represent a real innovation for charities and non-profit organizations. Many charities and non-profits are already using PhotoStamps in innovative ways to raise money for their causes such as improving the impact of their direct mailings or as a great donor gift. We're very proud to encourage such great applications of PhotoStamps."

WWF Vice President of Marketing, Mark Pilipczuk added, "We are excited about this partnership, which is a wonderful opportunity to reach out and engage the public in raising funds to help WWF protect the world's endangered species. We look forward to our alliance with Stamps.com, and to having the PhotoStamps fuel greater awareness of our conservation work."

About World Wildlife Fund

Known worldwide by its panda logo, WWF leads international efforts to protect endangered species and their habitats. Now in its fifth decade, WWF works in more than 100 countries around the globe to conserve the diversity of life on Earth. With nearly 1.2 million members in the U.S. WWF is the world's largest privately financed conservation organization. For more information, visit www.worldwildlife.org.

Motley Fool
Stamping Down on Personalized Postage
Thursday September 23, 11:22 am ET
By Rich Duprey

Editor's note: The original version of this article reported that the director bought shares two days before the company made an announcement. This is incorrect. He bought shares three days after the announcement. We regret and apologize for the mistake.

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You knew it had to happen.

Not long after I had written that Stamps.com (Nasdaq: STMP - News) had launched a new service to allow personalized postage but cautioned against offensive and politically incorrect images, The Smoking Gun website reported that it was able to get pictures printed of Yugoslavian strongman Slobodan Milosevic, New Jersey Gov. Jim McGreevey and his alleged gay lover and former state Homeland Security director Golan Cipel, as well as Monica Lewinsky's infamous stained blue dress.

OK, some dubious portraits made it through the censors, but then again, not many people would recognize Romanian dictator Nicolae Ceaucescu.

In response, however, Stamps.com has decided to take the draconian measure of prohibiting all photos of adults and teenagers from being printed. You can still get exciting pictures of furniture, landscapes, pets, cars, babies, and preteens printed. While the company has its own categories, you can term them Dull, Duller, Even More Dull, and Dullest.

Still, by all accounts the program is a success. Some 2,000 sheets were ordered within the first two days, while at the end of three weeks more than 40,000 sheets had been ordered. After a month of the service, more than 1 million individual PhotoStamps had been ordered. That's a lot of pictures of Fifi.

The effort is a trial program being run with the blessing of the U.S. Postal Service until Sept. 30. While Stamps.com would like the program to continue -- it should, since it gets all the money above and beyond the basic postage cost -- the program might now not be as successful as it was before The Smoking Gun's prank. If you can't put Biff's graduation picture on a stamp (but can get a picture of the chair he sat in at the ceremony) there might not be the same stampede as there had been.

Consumers are required to buy a minimum of one sheet of 20 stamps. For the typical $0.37 postage, Stamps.com charges $16.99, plus $2.99 shipping and handling. That's more than double the basic flag stamp you can pick up at the local post office.

When Stamps.com announced the program on Aug. 10, the shares of the stock jumped almost $2 a stub and then began an inexorable climb to a new 52-week high.

A PhotoStamp could be a big seller during the holidays if the Postal Service approves it for permanent status, though there's no guarantee it will. But looking at the results thus far, the post office would have to be crazy not to continue a program that encouraged the use of snail mail over email.

Stamps.com venture in doubt

 

By Frank Barnako, CBS.MarketWatch.com
Last Update: 1:44 PM ET Sept. 23, 2004  

(Updated to omit Standard & Poor's published comment about Real Networks. The comment came from a report published a year ago.)

WASHINGTON (CBS.MW) -- Stamps.com said Thursday that it was in "active discussions" with the U.S. Postal Service, which could lead to suspension of its nearly seven-week-old test of sales of personalized postage stamps.

 

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The company also canceled a publicized appearance Thursday at a technology investors' conference in San Francisco.

Shares of Los Angeles-based Stamps.com (STMP: news, chart, profile) fell almost 13 percent in midday trading.

A statement from the company said Chief Executive Ken McBride was unable to attend the conference, although a public relations person Thursday said she would try to make him available for a midday interview with CBS MarketWatch.

A week ago, Stamps.com announced that it would make a presentation at the ThinkEquity Partners' Growth Conference in San Francisco Thursday and make executives available for one-on-one investor meetings.

A company representative said Stamps.com has been in talks with the Postal Service since the test of PhotoStamps began.

Stamps.com has restricted the selection of photographs it accepts for its PhotoStamps. Last week, it prohibited pictures of famous and infamous people, and this week it began refusing to accept photos of anyone who appears to be over the age of 12. Animals, business logos and landscapes are still acceptable.

UPDATE 2-Stamps.com falls on concern over product test

Thu Sep 23, 2004 04:31 PM ET

(Recasts, adds background, updates stock price)

NEW YORK, Sept 23 (Reuters) - Shares of Stamps.com (STMP.O: Quote, Profile, Research) , which sells postage over the Internet, fell 11 percent on Thursday on concerns that its PhotoStamps service, which allows the creation of personalized stamps, might be discontinued, an analyst said.

Stamps.com Chief Executive Ken McBride canceled his appearance at a ThinkEquity investment conference in San Francisco, citing a scheduling conflict as the company determines whether to go forward with the company's first product targeted at consumers.

The company, which derives much of its revenue from small businesses, is in talks with the U.S. Postal Service regarding the market test of its PhotoStamps service, which allows customers to submit digital photos to be placed on postage stamps. The company is reviewing data from the market test, which is expected to end Sept. 30.

Stamps.com is considering whether to suspend the PhotoStamp test, continue the service during its review, or launch an entirely new market test.

Stamps.com's stock, which has surged since it announced the PhotoStamps product last month, slumped $1.69, or 11.08 percent, close at $13.56 on Nasdaq.

Mike Crawford, an analyst at B. Riley & Co., who recommends buying the stock, said the stock fell on uncertainty surrounding the market test of PhotoStamps.

Crawford said the U.S. Postal Service is concerned about inappropriate images appearing on stamps after The Smoking Gun (http://www.thesmokinggun.com/) Web site submitted infamous images of celebrities to test what would appear on postage stamps.

Crawford, whose portfolio includes Stamps.com shares, said he expects the company and the postal service to come to some sort of agreement since PhotoStamps appears to be gaining acceptance.

Pictures of Lee Harvey Oswald and organized crime figure Sammy "the Bull" Gravano were rejected by the service, when The Smoking Gun submitted them.

Photos submitted by The Smoking Gun that made the cut included Unabomber Ted Kaczynski's high school and college yearbook photos; Slobodan Milosevic, the former Yugoslav President who is facing a war crimes tribunal; Monica Lewinsky's blue dress; and New Jersey Gov. James McGreevey with Golan Cipel.

On September 13, the company had said it would focus on printing stamps of babies, children, animals and landscapes or photos from approved photographers or portrait studios. Adults and teen photos have been declared off limits, Stamps.com said.

Last week, the company announced a partnership with the World Wildlife Fund through the program.