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BMG Entertainment and Capital One Launch Credit Card for Music Fans

October 3, 2000 at 8:04 AM EDT

NEW YORK and FALLS CHURCH, Va., Oct. 3 /PRNewswire/ -- BMG Entertainment, a division of Bertelsmann AG, and Capital One Bank announced today they have launched the new BMG Visa for music lovers. BMG Visa cardholders will be eligible to participate in the BMG Visa InMusic Rewards Program. Cardholders will earn 3 points for every $1 spent in the BMG Music Service (CDs and other merchandise) and 1 point for every $1 spent everywhere Visa is accepted -- earning free CDs, concert tickets, audio equipment, certificates to buy from the BMG Music Service catalog and more.

The cobranded credit card, which creates a valuable platform for BMG to market its artists to consumers, is part of a larger promotional marketing relationship between the two companies. BMG and Capital One will also participate in several cross-promotional initiatives, including direct marketing, online and events, through which Capital One will leverage BMG's music and special products for their customers.

"We are thrilled to partner with Capital One on this exciting endeavor," said Scott Richman, Vice President, Partnership Marketing, BMG Entertainment. "By leveraging the power of BMG's music and Capital One's powerful information-based marketing strategy, we will be able to bring consumers their favorite music in a new and compelling way."

Music lovers can apply for the BMG Visa online at http://www.bmgvisa.com or by phone at 1-888-BMG-VISA and receive a free CD after their first purchase made with their new BMG Visa.

"We're excited by the opportunity for Capital One and BMG to build on our abilities to customize products for music lovers," said Jory Berson, Capital One's Vice President of Marketing and Analysis. "Our ability to tailor credit card products to customers' needs, coupled with BMG's extensive arsenal of musical selections, means the BMG Visa has something for everyone."

And, BMG Visa cardholders will do more than earn points with each purchase. Until January 1, 2001, a portion of every BMG Visa transaction will be donated to the Christina Aguilera Foundation benefiting abused, homeless or sick children. Formed earlier this year, the Christina Foundation is planning to build and support a shelter for children in Aguilera's hometown of Pittsburgh, PA. (An artist on BMG's RCA label, Grammy-winner Aguilera is one of the many superstars whose music, concert tickets and autographed memorabilia cardholders can earn through the BMG Music InMusic Rewards Program.)

"I'm so pleased to be a part of this program," said Christina Aguilera, "especially because a portion of every BMG Visa transaction will support the Christina Aguilera Foundation's efforts to help kids in need. I am grateful for the success I've had over the past year and am glad that the BMG Visa will be helping me to help others."

Headquartered in Falls Church, Virginia, Capital One Financial Corporation (http://www.CapitalOne.com) is a holding company whose principal subsidiaries, Capital One Bank and Capital One, F.S.B., offer consumer lending products. Capital One's subsidiaries collectively had 27.1 million accounts and $21.9 billion in managed loans outstanding as of June 30, 2000. Capital One is one of the major financial service providers on the Internet, with online account decisioning, real-time account numbering, online retail deposits and more than one million customers serviced online. Capital One is a FORTUNE 500 company that trades on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol "COF" and is included in the S&P 500 Index. Capital One was named "Card Marketer of the Year" by Card Marketing magazine (March 2000) and also listed by Business Week as one of its WebSmart 50 (September 18, 2000).

BMG Entertainment is the $4.7 billion worldwide music and entertainment division of Bertelsmann AG, one of the world's leading media companies, with annual revenues of $17.6 billion. BMG owns more than 200 record labels in 54 countries, including Arista Records, RCA Music Group and Ariola. BMG has been a leader in using the Internet to bring fans closer to their favorite artists. In addition to establishing GetMusic, an online content and commerce joint venture, BMG's online presence includes more than 30 wholly owned music & lifestyle Web sites around the world, and strategic marketing agreements with and key investments in leading online companies ARTISTdirect, Riffage.com, Egreetings Network, FanGlobe, Listen.com and Eritmo.com, among others. BMG also owns one of the world's largest music publishing companies, one of the world's leading compact disc and cassette manufacturing companies, and the world's largest music membership service, BMG Music Service, whose BMGMusicService.com consistently ranks within the Top 10 e-commerce sites. Bertelsmann's North America interests also include the Random House Inc. book publishing group; and the Gruner + Jahr magazine publishing group, which includes McCall's, Parents, Family Circle and YM magazines, among others. SOURCE Capital One Financial Corporation

CONTACT: Dana Cilluffo of Capital One, 703-205-1069; or Nathaniel Brown of BMG Entertainment, 212-930-6790/