Barbara Hohbach
Virginia
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Kim McNair
1 (415) 593-261

July 19, 2000
Accenture and Epylon Announce Strategic Alliance

Team to Use Ariba-based Platform for Public Sector eProcurement Solutions

Washington, D.C., July 19, 2000 - Accenture, a leading management and technology consulting firm, and Epylon Corporation, a leading provider of hosted eBusiness solutions for education and government institutions, today announced a global alliance to deliver eProcurement solutions tailored to the public sector.

In addition, Accenture Technology Ventures, the venture capital unit of Accenture, has purchased a minority stake in Epylon. Terms of the investment were not disclosed.

Epylon has developed a unique set of public sector procurement tools. These include eQuote, which instantly produces a price quote for buyers based on the criteria specified. Epylon’s tools also integrate standard auditing functions into the overall eProcurement process.

Under a separate agreement, Epylon has secured the right to power the Accenture-Epylon eProcurement solutions with Ariba software. The three firms plan to collaborate on related business development, marketing and product development support activities.

The result is expected to be an eProcurement solution which combines domain expertise, technology solutions, change management consulting and integration expertise aimed at bringing greater efficiencies to the public sector procurement and supply chain processes. "Providing eProcurement solutions for educational and other public sector institutions presents a huge market opportunity. We are excited by the potential to leverage Epylon’s current position into a leadership position in this market," said Barry Cater, an Accenture Technology Ventures partner.

The Accenture Global Government and Higher Education Services Group will work with institutional buying organizations to seamlessly customize and integrate Epylon’s eBusiness technologies with existing public sector client infrastructures. The firm will also train purchasing professionals on this tailored eProcurement solution.

"This alliance with Epylon represents an opportunity to develop solutions that help the public sector align its procurement processes with those of the commercial sector," said Martin Cole, a managing partner with the Accenture Global Government practice. "Additionally, public sector organizations adopting eProcurement stand to reap a rapid return on their investment by using the Internet to streamline processes used to procure everything from office supplies and furniture, to vehicles and temporary employees."

Currently, public sector procurement and supply chain processes are fragmented, require a high-level of integration with legacy, third-party and administrative computer systems, and are governed by a unique set of business rules - all factors contributing to inefficiencies and protracted procurement cycles. In the United States alone, tens of thousands of suppliers sell more than $850 billion in products and services to an estimated 120,000 government agencies and education institutions.

"Both Accenture and Ariba bring a unique perspective and world-class value proposition to the public sector," said Stephen George, founder and CEO of Epylon. "Epylon will overlay its experience in public sector product development onto the software and consulting components these team members offer, resulting in barrier-free access to a market-leading eBusiness solution customized to meet the stringent requirements of public sector procurement."

About Epylon
Corporation Epylon Corporation is the leading provider of hosted eBusiness solutions for education, government and other public sector institutions. Epylon’s eProcurement solution is designed entirely around the needs of public sector purchasing professionals. The company currently has over 1,200 registered school districts and government agencies, representing over $7 billion in annual spending, and more than 1,400 registered supply partners including Office Depot, Grainger, Virco, Staples, J.L Hammett, Xerox, Ingram Micro, Wesco and Barnes & Noble.com. Headquartered in San Francisco, Calif., Epylon is privately held and can be found on the Web at www.epylon.com

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