Microsoft and USWeb Form Strategic Alliance To Help Businesses Take Advantage of the Web

NEW YORK, Dec. 11, 1996 — Microsoft Corp. and USWeb Corp., one of the nation’s largest Web professional services firms, today announced a strategic alliance agreement. The alliance joins USWeb’s professional services and Microsoft’s leading Internet technology to offer a complete source for innovative business solutions that help customers maximize the Web as a business tool. In the same announcement, USWeb named the Microsoft® Active Platform and Microsoft Internet Explorer as its strategic Internet and intranet technology platform.

“After extensive evaluation of Web technologies, USWeb chose the Microsoft Active Platform because it delivers superior enabling technologies that provide the greatest value to our customers,”
said Joe Firmage, CEO of USWeb Corp.
“We believe Microsoft and USWeb together can meet the needs of customers and accelerate the acceptance of the Web as a strategic business tool.”

“We’re excited about working with USWeb because ultimately our customers are the winners,”
said Bill Gates, chairman and CEO of Microsoft.
“Now, the millions of Microsoft customers have access to the expertise of USWeb’s high-end Web professional services. And by choosing the Microsoft Active Platform, the thousands of USWeb customers now have access to best-of-breed Internet technologies.”

Joining Best-in-Class Technology With Regional Web Professional Services

The objective of the strategic alliance between Microsoft and USWeb is to make the power of the Web more easily accessible to a greater number of businesses by joining best-in-class technology with local Web professional services expertise. USWeb will use Microsoft’s extensive set of technology solutions to help businesses exploit the power of the Web in both Internet and intranet applications. The strategic alliance draws from the expertise of each company to reduce the cost and complexity of getting businesses on the Web – Microsoft in Internet clients, servers and development tools and USWeb in Internet and intranet consulting, needs analysis, architecture planning, design, development, integration, hosting, site marketing, training services and local market presence. The following are the areas of focus for this relationship:

  • Incorporate the Microsoft Active Platform into USWeb technology solutions. This will make it easier for customers to leverage and integrate their existing IT infrastructure to build innovative Web-based solutions that work with their current systems – protecting their investment.

  • Launch a nationwide series of educational seminars for corporate customers that focus on solving business problems and enhancing business effectiveness through the application of Internet technologies and the Web.

  • Collaborate on building next-generation technologies and products that will make it easier to design, implement, and manage new and existing intranets and Internet sites.

  • Develop a joint national marketing campaign designed to educate businesses on how to use Internet technology to gain competitive advantage.

“The alliance between Microsoft and USWeb is the sort of missing link customers are looking for to drive mass adoption of the Web as a useful business tool,”
said Dan Kempka, president of USWeb Hollywood.
“Our customers are asking for Web-based business solutions that are more reliable, easier to build and more cost-effective to deploy and maintain.”

About the Active Platform

The Active Platform is an open platform for building Internet and intranet applications. It consists of three key parts that provide a consistent component-based programming model: the Active Desktop, the Active Server and ActiveX
™
technologies. The Active Platform enables businesses to more easily create custom Web sites and intranet applications because they do not have to start from scratch. They can make optimal use of the innovative work of hundreds of component developers and tools vendors. More than 2,000 ActiveX Controls are commercially available with which to build Active Platform applications.

Company Backgrounds

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (NASDAQ
“MSFT”
) is the worldwide leader in software for personal computers. The company offers a wide range of products and services for business and personal use, each designed with the mission of making it easier and more enjoyable for people to take advantage of the full power of personal computing every day.

USWeb is one of the largest professional services firms to provide a single source for Internet and intranet services. The company offers end-to-end solutions, including needs analysis, architecture planning, Internet and intranet Web consulting, design, development, access, hosting, site marketing and education services. USWeb Corp. is headquartered in Santa Clara, Calif. Go to (http://www.usweb.com/) or call (408) 987-3200 for company news and information.

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Microsoft and ActiveX are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Microsoft Corp. in the United States and/or other countries.

USWeb, the USWeb logo and Outfitters to the World Wide Web are trademarks of USWeb Corp.

All other trademarks are property of their respective owners.

CONTACT:

Geoff Kerr

USWeb Corp.

(408) 987-3260

gkerr@usweb.com

Pam Kahl

Waggener Edstrom for Microsoft

(503) 443-7000

pamk@wagged.com

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