Topica Announces Acquisition of IDG’s TipWorld

SAN FRANCISCO, CALIF. — MARCH 14, 2000 — Topica Inc., the leading provider of email-based content, announced today that it has acquired International Data Group’s (IDG) TipWorld. TipWorld is a leading publisher of email newsletters, featuring expert advice, news and learning by email. With this acquisition, Topica now has nearly 10 million subscriptions and delivers over 200 million email messages per month. In addition, IDG will take an equity stake in Topica.

TipWorld’s collection of over 20,000 tips and 140 newsletters will be integrated into Topica’s rapidly expanding directory of email newsletters and discussion lists that includes a wide range of popular topics and interests. TipWorld daily tips cover everything from technology, recipes, fitness, financial planning, car care and book reviews. They reach subscribers in 170 countries around the globe.

"Our goal at Topica is to provide the best content to our subscribers," said Ariel Poler, CEO of Topica. "The TipWorld acquisition increases the quality of our content, while allowing advertisers to place their message in context and reach an audience based on their demonstrated interests."

In addition, Topica and PC World, IDG’s largest computer publication, will engage in a cross-promotional partnership, and Topica will establish an IDG category within its directory where visitors can easily sign up for newsletters published by premier brands such as PC World. IDG and its business units will continue their aggressive publishing program of email newsletters targeted to the audiences they serve on computing and other topics.

"By partnering on an equity basis with the leading provider of email-based content, and through an innovative cross-promotion program, we can accelerate the customer growth rates for the Internet products of both Topica and IDG," said Kelly Conlin, president and CEO of IDG.

This acquisition significantly expands Topica’s inventory for highly targeted email advertising messages. TipWorld newsletters have already been generating substantial revenues and attracting top tier advertisers such as NextCard. "TipWorld is a premium asset. NextCard has been very pleased with our marketing efforts to this Internet audience, as we have generated very attractive accounts at a low acquisition cost. This is why we entered into a long term partnership with TipWorld," commented Dan Springer, Chief Marketing Officer of NextCard.

"Topica's acquisition of TipWorld is a logical step for Topica," said Matt Cain, Vice President of Workgroup Computing Strategies, META Group. "As the

email content market matures, we can expect to see more consolidation. With this acquisition, Topica is well positioned to establish itself as one of the dominant players in the email-based content space."

Topica’s searchable directory contains tens of thousands of topic-specific email newsletters and discussion lists. Its subscription base is growing at a rate of approximately 30,000-40,000 per day.

"The TipWorld editorial staff and its approximately 75 freelance writers are excited about leveraging Topica’s resources to continue to grow TipWorld’s line of topic-specific newsletters," said Jim Welp, Editor-in-Chief of TipWorld. "I’m sure that TipWorld subscribers will be impressed with Topica’s comprehensive ‘Yahoo-style’ directory of email lists, and how easy it is to find and exchange information about their favorite topics."

The TipWorld acquisition announcement comes only one week after Topica launched its Advertising and List Promotion Network. Topica’s Network is the first service of its kind that gives advertisers the ability to reach highly targeted audiences via email, while allowing owners of email newsletters and discussion lists the opportunity to promote their lists and make money.

About Topica Inc.

Founded in January 1998, Topica Inc. is the leading provider of email-based content. By offering tens of thousands of email newsletters and discussions, people can easily find and exchange information about their favorite topics via email. For people who run or want to start their own email newsletters and discussions, Topica provides free hosting, archiving, promotion and advertising services. Privately held, Topica is based in San Francisco, California. Investors include August Capital, Highland Capital Partners, Moore Capital Management, Venture Frogs, and Stanford University. Additional information can be found at: http://www.topica.com.

About TipWorld.com

TipWorld is the leading publisher of expert advice, news and learning by email. Each business day, TipWorld delivers over 140 newsletters to subscribers in 170 countries around the world. TipWorld’s editorial staff works with approximately 75 freelance writers who provide daily original content on a wide range of topics. Additional information can be found at http://www.tipworld.com.

About IDG

Headquartered in Boston, International Data Group (IDG) informs more people worldwide about information technology than any other company in the world. With annual revenues of $2.56 billion, IDG is the leading global provider of IT media, research, conferences and expositions. IDG publishes more than 290 computer newspapers and magazines and 4,000 book titles in 80 countries, led by the Computerworld/InfoWorld, Macworld, Network World, PC World, CIO, Channel World and For Dummies global product lines. IDG offers online users the largest network of technology-specific sites around the world through IDG.net (http://www.idg.net), which comprises more than 250 targeted Web sites in 55 countries. IDG is also a leading producer of 168 computer-related expositions in 35 countries, and research arm International Data Corporation (IDC) provides computer industry research and analysis through 49 offices in 42 countries worldwide. Company information is available at http://www.idg.com.

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