26 January 2004
(Johannesburg)--Gold miner Durban Roodepoort Deep Ltd. (DROOY), known as DRD, said Monday it has paid $200,000 to take an initial 1.4% stake in GoldMoney.com, an Internet-based gold marketing company.
In a statement, DRD, which mines around 1.0 million oz of gold a year, said it has an option to increase its stake to 14.3% of the company for a total investment of $2.0 million.
GoldMoney, launched by James Turk, has around 10,000 customers globally and holds around 30,000 ounces of gold in storage for them.
Through GoldMoney, gold is stored in vaults but only units of account called goldgrams are exchanged. A goldgram represents a buyer's ownership of a portion of gold held for GoldMoney customers in a secure vault.
GoldMoney's servers keep track of purchasers' ownership of goldgrams and the gold held is insured.
'We look forward to growing our association with GoldMoney,' said Ian Murray, DRD's chief executive. He said the GoldMoney's services should gain more prominence as international markets seek alternatives to the dollar as the currency for international trade.
GoldMoney's Turk said gold is not only a metal but becoming a form of currency.
'We believe there is huge potential for gold to be used for low-cost online payments worldwide as people are now doing with GoldMoney,' said Turk. 'Using gold in this way will increase its demand to the benefit of the industry,' he said.