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Tech Industry

Netcentives up 24 percent

    Netcentives Inc. (Nasdaq: NCNT) was up 24 percent Tuesday after Credit Suisse First Boston reiterated a "strong buy" rating on the Web-based marketing firm. The company also announced a deal with AOL (NYSE: AOL).

    Shares were up 0.12 to 11.13. CS First Boston was the company's lead underwriter for its IPO in October 1999, but the company has also seen praisefrom non-underwriting analysts.

    Netcentives said Tuesday it has implemented the first phase of support technology for AOL AAdvantage Rewards, which launched on Monday, October 2. The project is the result of a partnership between America Online and American Airlines and is supported in multiple ways by Netcentives technology. The rewards program offers consumers ways to earn and redeem miles online and offline.

    Netcentives, which specializes in developing frequent-buyer programs on the Internet, will see a revenue boost from the new AOL and American Airlines' AOL Aadvantage Rewards as it provided the technology for the program.

    In a research note, analyst James Marks said his 12-month price target for the company is $60, far above the $9 that the company's shares closed at Monday. Marks also said he expects the company to post a loss per share of $1.86 in 2000 and a loss per share of $1.73 in 2001.

    "We believe that Netcentives, down over 90 percent from its $96 high, is one of the most attractive opportunities for investors looking to scavenge among the recent casualties," he said in a note.

    Reuters contributed to this report.