Allen Valahu
+33 1 53 23 57 54

July 17, 2000

Accenture and Antfactory Join Forces to Build Europe's New Economy

LONDON: July 17, 2000: Accenture and antfactory announced today that they have teamed up to create, support and develop new economy businesses in collaboration with Europe’s leading corporates. The initiative will leverage antfactory’s strategic investment experience and acceleration skills and Accenture’s network of Dot-Com Launch Centres. It will provide European eCommerce spin-offs with the capital, tools and resources necessary to build their businesses rapidly. antfactory will invest up to $150m in thisbusiness-to-business initiative.

The combination brings together the new economy expertise of one of the world’s leading global management and technology consultancies with its global network of 24 Dot-Com Launch Centres and one of Europe’s most prominent strategic investors and accelerators. Together Accenture and antfactory will provide "smart" capital, Internet and technology expertise, deep industry domain knowledge, and high-speed business development.

The demand for the unique capabilities provided by this alliance is clear and growing, particularly among major corporates with a portfolio of new economy projects. The initiative will create value by rapidly developing projects into profitable businesses. Accenture and antfactory plan to complete 12 projects in the first year of the agreement and have already started to collaborate on a number of these business opportunities throughout Europe.

"We are very excited about our new relationship with antfactory," said James Hall, managing partner of Accenture’s London Dot-Com Launch Centre. "It makes compelling sense to combine our strengths in industry knowledge and technology to create internet companies and help them achieve speed to market. Together we make a fantastic team."

"There is an increasing realisation among corporates that success in the new economy requires harnessing vision and entrepreneurship to experienced operational capabilities and industrial assets," said Rob Bier, director corporate partnerships and strategy of antfactory. "Our partnership with Accenture provides corporates with a unique vehicle for developing winning new economy businesses."

About Accenture’s Dot-Com Launch Centres Accenture’s Dot-Com Launch Centres are unique "post-incubation" eBusiness production studios providing fledgling dot-com businesses with the management, marketing, finance, administration and technology expertise needed to quickly enter the marketplace and become enduring, revenue-generating businesses. The first in a global network of Dot-Com Launch Centres were established in early 2000. There are currently 24 such Launch Centres in major cities around the world.

About antfactory antfactory is a strategic investment company founded in October 1999 by a group of experienced Internet entrepreneurs and investors. It has over 140 employees with focused experience in the essential areas of enterprise development. antfactory, completed its second round of equity financing in June 2000, raising $150 million. Together with its $350 million side fund, $45 million raised last year and realisation on investments such as its recently announced sale of Ace-Quote, antfactory now has over $500 million of capital available for future investments. The antfactory team acts as general contractors and architects in developing solutions for partner companies that turn projects into businesses.

antfactory is a global firm whose home market is Europe with offices in seven cities (London, Munich, Paris, Milan, Madrid, Amsterdam and Stockholm). It also has offices in Mumbai, San Francisco and Tel Aviv and recently announced the opening of a further three offices in Buenos Aires, Mexico City and Sao Paolo, in a joint venture with CVC Latin America.

http://www.antfactory.com

###