Microsoft and HP Help Startups to Jump-Start E-Business Development

REDMOND, Wash., and PALO ALTO, Calif., April 17, 2001 — Microsoft Corp. and Hewlett-Packard Co. today announced a series of initiatives that will help emerging
e-businesses reduce startup costs, secure new business and technology partners, and develop skills to overcome common startup obstacles. By linking the Microsoft dotSmart initiative with the HP Garage Program, the companies will offer emerging e-businesses expanded offerings and easier access to resources to help their businesses succeed.

To help alleviate startup costs for emerging e-businesses, a number of Microsoft
e-commerce server technologies are now available to qualified HP Garage members free of charge for six months.* Included in the offering are Microsoft® Windows® 2000 Advanced Server, Visual Studio® development system, and many of the Microsoft .NET Enterprise Servers. Today’s announcement builds on an earlier offering that makes a free license of Microsoft Visual Studio 6 Enterprise Edition available to all HP Garage Program members.

“These offerings allow emerging e-businesses to test and optimize their e-commerce applications on the Microsoft platform without immediately incurring the upfront costs of purchasing technology,”
said Jon Roskill, general manager for e-commerce solutions at Microsoft.
“In today’s competitive times, we are pleased to offer a solution that allows HP Garage Program members to further reduce their burn rate and bring their product to market faster.”

With more than 50 percent of HP Garage program members already building their
e-business solutions on Windows-based HP Netservers, we’re pleased to address this need in the developer community,”
said Greg Mihran, general manager and director of the HP New Venture program, which includes the HP Garage Program initiative.

Securing New Business and Technology Partners

Links between the Microsoft dotSmart Web site and the HP Garage Program Web site will provide visitors to both sites with easy access to business and technology partner databases. Visitors to the Microsoft dotSmart Web site will find a database of technology partners, including solutions providers, technology consultants and independent software vendors. Visitors to the HP Garage Program Web site will now be able to access a network of affiliate businesses offering a variety of services — including advertising, marketing and research — at discounted rates.

Gaining Insight and Advice to Overcome Common Startup Obstacles

In addition, Microsoft is introducing a new e-business section in the Microsoft Business Newsletter. Articles will provide emerging e-businesses with valuable information about building online businesses, technology financing trends, and information and advice on international e-business issues. HP is a contributing content provider.

Microsoft and HP Sweepstakes Kick Off Joint Initiatives

To build awareness for these joint initiatives, Microsoft and HP will award one qualified startup with over $430,000 worth of hardware and software tools needed to jump-start its
e-business.** The sweepstakes package includes an HP NetServer, LH6000 PIIIX-700 with Microsoft Windows 2000 Advanced Server, Microsoft SQL Server™
2000 Enterprise Edition, and additional .NET Enterprise Server software preinstalled. Entrants are also eligible to win one of six HP Jornada PC companions.** More information can be found at or at .

About HP

Hewlett-Packard Co. (NYSE: HWP) — a leading global provider of computing and imaging solutions and services — is focused on making technology and its benefits accessible to individuals and businesses through simple appliances, useful e-services and solutions for an Internet infrastructure that’s always on. HP had total revenue from continuing operations of $48.8 billion in its 2000 fiscal year. Information about HP and its products can be found on the World Wide Web at .

About Microsoft

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq
) is the worldwide leader in software, services and Internet technologies for personal and business computing. The company offers a wide range of products and services designed to empower people through great software — any time, any place and on any device.

* After six months a license will need to be purchased or use of the product ceased.

** No purchase necessary. Open to legal residents of the 50 United States and the District of Columbia 18 years of age or older who are owners or employees of a business located in the United States. Game ends May 29, 2001. See full rules for details.

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

The names of actual companies and products mentioned herein may be the trademarks of their respective owners.

Note to editors: If you are interested in viewing additional information on Microsoft, please visit the Microsoft Web page at on Microsoft’s corporate information pages.

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