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AUTOMOTIVE ENTHUSIAST WEB SITES JOIN FORCES TO FORM BVERTICALS INC.

"e-co/op" Provides Technology, Marketing Economies of Scale

Corte Madera, Calif., April 17, 2000 -- PickupTruck.com, VWVortex.com and AudiWorld.com, three top automotive enthusiast Web sites, have joined forces to form BVerticals, the Internet's first "e-co/op."

An e-co/op is a group of grass roots, vertical enthusiast Web sites with existing traffic and communities. The sites team together to dominate a particular niche -- such as automobiles -- and leverage economies of scale across personnel and information technology requirements. As the e-co/op grows, partnering with other existing enthusiast Web sites, each new member's Web site is plugged into a common back-end infrastructure yet retains its original look, feel and URL. Most importantly, each new partner brings a loyal consumer following to the partnership.

BVerticals provides the technology and business infrastructure, allowing its partners to do what they do best -- develop content that meets the needs of their highly targeted niche audiences. BVerticals is currently in negotiations with other popular best-of-breed enthusiast Web sites as it seeks to add partners with loyal automotive enthusiast audiences.

John Gillies, currently CEO at PickupTruck.com, will also serve as CEO of BVerticals.

"BVerticals will revolutionize the way enthusiast sites provide service to their online communities," said Gillies. "At the same time, we will bring together a large audience that is fiercely loyal to the member Web sites of our 'e-co/op.' This will allow us to compete with large Internet portals by sending informed shoppers who are ready to buy to manufacturer, dealer and independent Web sites."

PickupTruck.com, VWVortex.com and AudiWorld.com attract more than 800,000 enthusiasts and new visitors each month. The sites, because of their frequently updated and original content, attract high levels of repeat traffic with most visitors returning every eight days or sooner. BVerticals' Web sites will function as vertical portals, funneling sales leads to manufacturer Web sites, large dealer group Web sites, third party lead generation Web sites and direct sales Web sites. PickupTruck.com for example has an agreement with CarsDirect.com, allowing their community members to order, finance and arrange for delivery of a new truck over the Web.

Tom Stallkamp, former vice chairman at Daimler-Chrysler and current vice-chairman and CEO of MSX International, is a PickupTruck.com board member. He also will hold a seat on the BVerticals board.

"Aggregating these enthusiast sites to gain economies and to increase the consumer value in this marketplace makes sense," Stallkamp said. "The Internet started with a business-to-consumer focus as the promise of an interactive media took shape. Business-to-business was the next logical step. Now it's clear that the Internet should be used for highly targeted interactions, either with enthusiasts, consumers, or businesses, to maximize the delivery of relevant and timely information."




About BVerticals Inc.
BVerticals, an "e-co/op," is a growing partnership of grass roots enthusiast Web sites. It provides economies of scale in technology, marketing and business services, and provides outstanding content to attract loyal, repeat audiences. By aggregating other enthusiast Web sites, BVerticals promises to have one of the largest, most loyal audiences in the automotive Web site industry.

 

About PickupTruck.com (www.pickuptruck.com)
PickupTruck.com is the premier online community for pickup truck enthusiasts. First launched in 1995, PickupTruck.com provides everything "pickup" to the online community, including information, news, dialog and products. The site includes information about all types of pickup trucks, coverage of major truck shows, discussion groups, and e-commerce capabilities.




About VWVortex.com (
www.vwvortex.com)
For more than three years, the VWVortex World Wide Web site has been the definitive and progressive online source for the latest information on Volkswagen brands. With over 10 million hits each month, from more than 200,000 unique visitors, VWVortex is uniquely positioned to offer the next generation in automobile enthusiast media. It combines the best in design and publication with the technology and up-to-the-minute capabilities of the Internet. The site is devoted to enthusiasts of Volkswagen, Audi, Bentley, Lamborghini, Seat and Skoda.




About AudiWorld.com (
www.audiworld.com)
AudiWorld.com got its roots in 1996 as a website called A4.Org devoted to the Audi A4 enthusiast. As Audi continued setting record sales increases, A4.Org expanded its coverage to include the full range of Audi products and was renamed AudiWorld.com. Today AudiWorld provides tremendous content and community to an extremely loyal Audi enthusiast readership that exceeds over 300,000 people each month.



What They're Saying About BVerticals, Inc.

Tom Stallkamp, CEO of MSX International and a BVerticals Board member:
"Aggregating these enthusiast sites to gain economies and to increase the consumer value in this marketplace makes sense. The Internet started with a business-to-consumer focus as the promise of an interactive media took shape. Business-to-business was the next logical step. Now it's clear that the Internet should be used for highly targeted interactions, either with enthusiasts, consumers, or businesses, to maximize the delivery of relevant and timely information."

Michael Levine, Founder of PickupTruck.com
"The e-co/op concept will provide an even better product for the automotive enthusiasts that are loyal to the BVerticals' Web sites. Each partner provides outstanding editorial content and other features that are popular with our information hungry community members. With a central resource for behind-the-scenes business functions, each site can focus energy on creating even better enthusiast Web sites."

Jamie Von Druska, Founder of VWVortex.com
"The partnership will allow PickupTruck.com, VWVortex.com and AudiWorld.com and other niche sites to provide our online enthusiasts with more of what they love -- great information about their favorite vehicles. Sharing talent and technology with other 'e-co/op' members will help all of us grow and prosper."

Jason Teller, Founder of AudiWorld.com
"The exciting part of the e-co/op model is that it provides for a clearly branded community experience within each vertical while enabling the enthusiast Web sites themselves to leverage off a common business and technical framework. BVerticals ultimately allows each Web site to concentrate on its core competency of providing world-class enthusiast coverage."