Electronic Trading Pioneers Build Future of Securities Trading on Microsoft Technologies

NEW YORK, June 16, 1999 — Today at the Securities Industries Association Technology Management Exhibit, Microsoft Corp. announced that the Microsoft®
Windows NT® operating system and Microsoft SQL Server TM are being increasingly used by the majority of leading electronic communication networks (ECNs) and alternative trading systems (ATSs), such as NexTrade ECN, OptiMark Technologies Inc., Archipelago Services LLC, Ashton Technology Group, CyBerCorp Inc. and LIMITrader Securities.

Ushering in a new era in capital markets, companies such as Archipelago, one of the largest electronic communication networks, are among a growing number of computer trading system companies successfully building their business on the Microsoft Windows® operating system platform.

“Our trading business has grown seventyfold in the last two years,” said Jerry Putnam, CEO of Archipelago. “We have nearly 250 Windows NT-based servers deployed running propriety software from Townsend Analytics Ltd. and Microsoft SQL Server. As the demand for mission-critical transactions continues to multiply, we feel confident that the Windows platform can and will continue to be able to execute high-volume trading 24 hours a day, handling the bandwidth demands of even the market’s most active times.”

Electronic communication networks are computer systems that match buy and sell orders, simplifying the process of trading stocks by making it low-cost, fast and anonymous. ECNs are currently capturing about 20 percent of Nasdaq-listed stocks.

A new method for trading electronically is represented by the OptiMark Trading System, which began live trading as a facility of the Pacific Exchange (PCX) at the end of January. “As an entirely new system with long-range implications for enhancing investors’ ability to find liquidity and trade large and small sizes effectively, OptiMark has employed best-of-breed technology every step of the way,” said William F. Adiletta, chief technology officer of OptiMark Technologies. “To that end, we have made extensive use of Microsoft Windows NT-based servers, deploying more than 400 at client sites across the country.”

“CyBerCorp and its wholly owned subsidiary CyBerBroker have built a best-of-breed reputation for reliability, efficiency and speed with the help of Windows NT,” said Philip R. Berber, CEO of CyBerCorp Inc. “We look forward, with the assistance of Microsoft’s technology, to bringing that reputation to the institutional trading and hedge fund industry.”

“Our associates have successfully deployed nearly 1,000 Windows NT-based servers to power the e-commerce revolution in financial services,” said Matthew Conners, worldwide finance manager for Financial Services at Microsoft. “Responding to the rapid adoption of the Internet and the trend towards after hours markets, they are offering their customers innovative electronic trade execution solutions. We are delighted to provide our associates with the best
e-commerce platform to successfully build leading-edge e-commerce solutions for the financial services industry.”

As an example of this, Fred S. Weingard, chief technology officer at Ashton Technology Group said, “Microsoft SQL Server and Windows NT clustering contributed greatly to the

successful implementation of features critical to our SEC-approved VWAP Trading System (VTS), such as high-reliability, high-capacity and total user anonymity.”

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.

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

Other product and company names herein may be trademarks of their respective owners.

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