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Online Bill Paying For Free... Citibank

Boot Camp feature for Tuesday, April 3, 2001

Online bill paying, for free. I'm Fred Fishkin with Bloomberg Bootcamp. Most banks and bill paying services charge customers fees ranging from five to fifteen dollars a month for online bill payment features. One exception is Citibank... .which has been attracting customers from around the world to Citibankonline. President and COO Mark Parsells...

"We have six hundred thousand customers in the U.S. and two point two million globally."

The service has been rated the number one online bank by Gomez and Forrester Research. The idea, says Parsells, is to simplify your life...

"So what I mean by that is, you're able to pay your bills online with Citibank Online and it's a free service. Most place charge for that. So we have sixty percent of our customers are signed up for online bill pay. Not only can you pay your bills, you can also be alerted through wireless alerts which can go to your cell phone, which can go to your Palm Pilot, can go to your email or even to your fax machine... to tell you your balance is low, to tell you a payment is due or to tell you a trade has gone through."

While the Citibankonline site launched just last October, the company has been a cyber-pioneer...

"It was 1984 that we first launched dialup banking, you know when we used to send you out all the disks. And we were the first player to do that."

The forecasts are for explosive growth in Web based and wireless banking in the months to come. Bootcamp, I'm Fred Fishkin, Bloomberg Radio.