In 1996 NEBS began to become interested in capitalizing on the emerging Internet Technologies. Through the promotions of the R&D group as well as a growing interest from IS, NEBS cautiously began an investigation into exploiting the Internet. For NEBS, it was a natural evolution, as the company receives all of its orders either by phone or by mail. But it took a few years of work to get the company to take the leap. During this time, I transferred to the IS group and promoted this evolution with development of prototypes, in-house Intranets and finally, NEBS first Internet on-line catalog.
The NEBS Internet On-Line catalog was an outstanding success and rapidly grew as we added features such as real-time on-line typesetting, customer order history, secure transactions and Small Business support information. Sister sites were also spun off to other NEBS subsidiaries such as DFS, Canada and the UK.
By 1998, NEBS Internet program had settled into steady, gradual expansion, and I realized that it was time to find a new challenge. after 20 years of employment with NEBS, I left for a very small Internet portal tart-up called teen.com. A portal site teenaged girls and boys to meet, read up on fashion, Entertainment, games and so much more.
Teen.com was without a doubt the best venture that I have ever contributed to. It was a very small Internet start-up venture, comprised of very talented and committed, creative editors, programmers and business men and women. For nearly 3 years, we created a teenaged refuge and reality - a place for teens to meet, greet, discuss topics, argue, fight, support and generally push the boundaries of their world.
Our business model was to attract teen aged visitors with internet content, games, information and features such as message boards, chat rooms and interviews with celebrities. revenue came from banner and pop-up advertisements. Our success came as we attracted over 1 million unique visitors each month! With a solid revenue stream, plenty of visitors and very low expenses, we achieved profitability.
During the Wall Street declines of Internet stocks, ad revenues began to steadily fall and after the events of 9/11, revenues became scarce. We were forced to close our doors at the end of 2001.
As a small start-p, everyone wore many hats and pitched in wherever need. My main responsibilities included:
teen.com represents one of the most exciting and innovative ventures of my career. The rapid pace, excitement, innovation and achievements are unsurpassed in my experience. You never knew what challenges would pop up each day, and the innovative team rose to each occasion. We did more with less. brought in our own home computers to expand the chat rooms, jury rigged air conditioning to keep the servers cool, created games, events, on-air shows, and the teens loved it all. It was the finest group of people I have ever been associated with.