British e-tailer Indigosquare, owned by credit card company Barclaycard, has made a bid of £1 million and 10% of its shares for rival

In reply, the board and major shareholders of Shopsmart have agreed to the terms, with the remaining shareholders set to decide within the next four weeks.

Shopsmart, which compares prices in around one thousand stores, claims 500,000 visitors per month, making it the UK’s leading online shopping gateway. Although it is smaller, Indigosquare is backed by the financial muscle of Barclays and Japanese investment bank Nomura.

Indigosquare revealed that it had not yet decided which name will be used for the merged company. However, it added that the site will retain its Barclaycard branding.

Enthused Indigosquare chief executive Mark Shea: “The deal opens up huge opportunities for us in online shopping, which is expected to be worth £12.5 billion in the UK by 2005.”

News source: BBC Online Business News (UK)