REMEMBER DABS.COM, the online computer store you used before you started getting your stuff from E-Buyer, Amazon, Scan (by appointment to Her Majesty) or Novatech just after it was taken over by BT?
Well, BT has celebrated the 10th anniversary of its 2006 acquisition of the original online IT emporium by binning it and shifting its remaining customers to BT-branded websites - BT Business Direct for, well, businesses, and BT Shop for the proles.
The death of Dabs.com will be completed by 11 April and the remaining users will be asked to establish new accounts with one of the two BT-branded websites. Old Dabs.com accounts will remain accessible for the foreseeable future so that customers can manage current orders and organise returns.
However, instead of migrating accounts to the BT-branded commerce sites, BT is imploring customers to re-register in a bid to keep as many of them as possible. A lot of them clearly aren't bothered to do so.
"We want you to join us on this journey," begged BT in an email to customers informing them of the decision. "In a really competitive market where there's lots of choice, we'd like to say a big thank you for choosing to shop with Dabs.com in the past and hope we can continue to serve you in the future."
Someone in the BT hierarchy clearly thought it a good idea, even if the original acquisition wasn't. The bean counters kept stock levels to a minimum because actually having stuff in a warehouse doesn't look good on the balance sheet, and turnover has tanked. The latest accounts indicate that revenues have plunged from around £200m in 2008 to just £135m in 2014. Excellent work, BT.
Dabs was founded by entrepreneur David Atherton in 1990, and acquired by BT in 2006 for around £30m. It was a peculiar purchase, and Dabs rapidly faded from view the moment BT bought it.
E-Buyer and others eagerly scooped up the customers that fell by the wayside, although it remained a fixture with a declining number of corporate buyers. µ
It's an onomatopoeic week for Google
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