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IFC INVESTS IN LATIN AMERICAN WEB TRAFFIC MEASUREMENT COMPANY


Adriana Gomez
Phone: (202) 458-5204

Fax: (202) 974-4384

E-mail: agomez@ifc.org


WASHINGTON, D.C., March 5, 2001 The International Finance Corporation will help establish a Latin America-based web traffic measurement and auditing company with an equity investment of US$1.5 million in Certifica.com, Inc.

Certifica, which launched operations in April 2000, is working to increase transparency and confidence in the Latin American Internet market, thereby helping to develop the Internet sector across the continent.


IFC's investment—which will help Certifica launch operations in Brazil, Mexico, and Colombia, and further develop current services in Peru, Argentina, Uruguay, and Chile—is part of a $3.25 million Series B round of financing alongside venture capital firms Advent Morro Equity Partners and Ventana Global as well as Fundacion Chile and Audiencias y Estadisticas, the original sponsors of Certifica.


Certifica measures the web traffic of its clients and provides them with independent third-party certification through an internally developed software.  The company’s aim is to become one of the leading local standards for Internet traffic measurement in Latin America.


The existence of reliable and comparable traffic figures for competing Latin American web sites will allow investors and advertisers to better allocate scarce financial resources among Internet-based companies across the region.  It will also help Internet companies with their web-based strategies by providing them with detailed, timely, and accurate reports to improve their internal decision making.  Certifica has also entered into a cooperation agreement with PricewaterhouseCoopers to jointly develop Certifica Audit, a co-branded Internet traffic measurement product using Certifica’s proprietary software and PwC audit methodologies and tools.


Mohsen Khalil, the World Bank Group’s Director for Global Information and Communication Technologies, said Certifica will bring to Latin America a reliable third-party source of information concerning Internet usage, helping to increase transparency and establish industry best practice across the region.


Alejandro Fosk, the co-founder and CEO of Certifica, added that the company’s exclusive focus on Latin America is addressing the needs of regional companies with an Internet presence by providing them with service in Spanish or Portuguese on a 24/7 basis.  


Certifica (www.certifica.com) is a Chile-based company with offices in Chile, Argentina, and Peru.  The company intends to open new offices in Brazil, Mexico, and Colombia and will be offering services in eight Latin American countries by the end of 2001.  The company can be reached by email at informacion@certifica.com.


The mission of IFC (www.ifc.org), part of the World Bank Group (www.worldbank.org), is to promote sustainable private sector investment in developing countries as a way to reduce poverty and improve people’s lives.  IFC finances private sector investments in the developing world, mobilizes capital in the international financial markets, and provides technical assistance and advice to governments and businesses.


The World Bank Group recently established a Global Information and Communication Technologies Department to promote the transfer of information technologies to the developing world.  The department focuses on communications networks and Internet infrastructure projects that are expected to have a multiplier effect in expanding the use of the Internet in developing countries.

www.certifica.com