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Of Bulls & Bears

Friday 11th August 2000

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Game holds price better than players

Ferdinand was visiting a central Auckland "bargain house" recently when among the assorted detritus of other people's lives he found a board game called Takeover. Wiping away the dust of ages, he found a monopoly-like board with a corporate name on each square. It was only when he spied such names as Equiticorp, Chase Corporation, Petrocorp, Bexley Corporation and endless other long-dead "corpses" that Ferdinand realised the game was a relic from the glamorous 1980s and the board squares were undoubtedly sponsored by these once prominent companies. To cap things off, a glossary of investment terms that came with the game was sponsored by broker Buttle & Co, which also is no longer with us. This game is available to students of investment history for $5, which means it has held its value better than almost all the companies that sponsored it.

Online service to fetch and carry

Courier and mail company Freightways has been investing heavily in becoming an internet company. This does not mean it is about to become a virtual company but rather it believes it will benefit from an increase in business from online retailers sending goods to customers. As the company said recently, "Freightways is answering this challenge through the establishment of a group-wide packaged solution under the banner of Freightways Electronic Trading and Commerce Hub." While this term sounds suitably high-tech, Ferdinand had to check his calendar to make sure it wasn't April 1st. After all, as an acronym, Freightways' new service will be known as Fetch.

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