Telstra 2 online processing 50pc of paper model costs

Processing electronic retail share applications in the Telstra 2 share offer is expected to be 50 per cent of the cost of handling paper-based applications, according to officials.

In what is believed to be the biggest public share offer available over the Web, T2 shares became available online yesterday.

Coinciding with the opening of the T2 retail offer, joint global coordinators, JB Were & Son, and online developer @www launched the electronic side of the offer. Australians are able to apply and pay for shares using the Web site, http://www.t2.telstra.com.au.

The public offer document and preregistrations have been available online since September 8.

Australian preregistrants, shareholders, and general applicants can pay for shares using B-Pay or phone banking, Joshua Firth, managing director of @www, said.

Firth said the T2 Web site is driven using Oracle's 7.34 database integrated with DB2, Sybase and SQL Server and is hosted by Telstra's internet arm, Big Pond. It is a secure site and is restricted from foreigners by using IP barring, Firth said.

Stephen Nossal, director of corporate services, JB Were & Son, said 9 per cent or 153,000 preregistrations for T2 shares came via the Web. This is double the percentage figure for T1, Nossal said. A total of 1.8 million preregistrations were received.

Avoiding speculation on expected usage, Nossal said the Web site has been built to support a "huge capacity".

In addition to the public Web site, there are multiple private sites available to brokers and financial planning organisations as well as a separate Web site for the media, Nossal said.

He said 40 brokers had already signed up for a "broker button" to be added to their site. This gives brokers a direct link to the T2 Web site. Nossal said he expects more brokers to join the scheme.

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