High Street retailer John Lewis will merge Buy.com, the internet business it bought a year ago, into its existing online operation.
The company had been developing Buy.com in parallel with the John Lewis online business, but the strategy was not cost effective.
"John Lewis was running two dotcoms and the team realised that a merger made sense," said a spokeswoman. "The two sites offer complementary products. Buy.com is all technology and Johnlewis.com currently sells no technical products."
The sites will be merged in March, after which visitors to Buy.com will be automatically redirected to the Johnlewis.com site. The Buy.com brand will disappear but customers will buy electrical goods on the John Lewis site.
The department store acquired buy.com in February 2001 and based its current johnlewis.com site on the technology and customer service software. Buy.com was launched in the UK in March 2000, and was the fourth most visited online retail site in the UK in December 2000.
The US Buy.com site is a separate company, and is not affected by the merger.
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