Accenture and Asera Inc. Team to Provide Internet-Based, Business-to-Business Demand-Chain Solutions

NEW YORK, and BELMONT, CA., February 8, 2000 - Accenture, a leading global management and technology consultancy and a leader in customer relationship management (CRM), and Asera Inc., a provider of Internet solutions for the business-to-business demand chain, today announced a global strategic alliance to help companies automate and improve vital demand-chain components -- including marketing, sales and service -- across all distribution channels.

As part of the alliance, Accenture Technology Ventures, the venture capital unit of Accenture, has taken a minority stake in Asera . "This is an example of Accenture Technology Ventures aggressively expanding Accenture’s pioneering strategy of taking ownership stakes in independent Internet and emerging technology companies," said Jackson L. Wilson, managing partner, Accenture Technology Ventures.

Accenture and Asera will provide clients with new CRM capabilities, and the ability to maximize the effectiveness and revenue growth of every direct and indirect channel to market. The alliance will deliver electronic commerce (eCommerce) solutions based on the Asera(tm) eService(tm) and will enable companies to quickly introduce new products, promotions and service offerings.

Unlike traditional packaged software, the Asera solution enables clients to rapidly deploy a differentiated eCommerce solution. Highly configurable, the eService can quickly incorporate new innovations, improving the ability of companies to respond to evolving needs of their channel partners and end customers. In a typical 60- 90-day "activation," the eService offering is tailored for clients to include their unique brand characteristics, content and specialized processes. Clients maintain control of their eCommerce strategies through the personalized Web sites eService delivers.

"With the added value brought by the Asera eService, our clients will be able to link their channel partners to the rapid delivery of tailored products and services for their customers’ changing needs. This winning combination will enhance our clients’ capability to build their customer relationships and revenue- generating opportunities," said Dale Renner, global managing partner of Accenture’s Customer Relationship Management line of business. "While Accenture has undertaken numerous channel- related projects, the channel effectiveness market is largely untapped. It will develop and grow in importance as our clients look to redefine and streamline their demand channels."

"We are thrilled to be teaming with Accenture," said Asera President and CEO Warren Weiss. "Accenture brings to the alliance a proven track record in the delivery of business-to- business eCommerce solutions focused on marketing, sales and service. We share a vision of delivering value to our customers with a business model that measures our success by the success of our clients. This relationship extends the capabilities and market reach of both partners to deliver best-in-class eCommerce solutions to our joint customers."

The Asera solution is "netsourced," which enables companies to incorporate new functions as needed and rapidly incorporate new features to ensure the service keeps pace with their specific business needs. Netsourcing - a business model and delivery mechanism in which a third party provides and manages business solutions over the Internet - enables clients to incorporate new features incrementally. They use only what they need, and pay only for what they use.

Accenture and Asera will initially focus their efforts on providing channel solutions to four industries: electronics and high-tech, communications, financial services, and the chemicals industries. However, as a flexible business-to-business utility for the demand chain, the new offering has widespread relevance for virtually all industries that rely on brokers, resellers or distributors, as well as for companies wishing to provide key customers with a personalized portal into their organization.

About Asera Asera provides high-value Internet solutions for the business-to-business demand chain - the process of marketing, selling and supporting products through distribution channels. Delivered as a managed service on a pay-as-you-use basis, our unique offering, the Asera (tm) eService(tm), is a high-value e-business solution that improves channel effectiveness, sales volume and customer loyalty. Whether companies go to market via direct and indirect channels or build a Web-based marketplace, the Asera eService can be rapidly configured and personalized to support each unique, differentiated channel strategy. Based on an open, modular architecture, the Asera eService delivers high- impact functionality on demand, and can quickly incorporate best-in-class industry innovations to adapt to business change in Internet time. With the Asera eService, companies can activate their channels faster, deliver unique value immediately and adapt their e- business ahead of the competition.


Ed Trapasso

+1 (917) 452 3555

Chris Hyrne

+1 (650) 769 1369