INTERSHOP and Cobalt To Deliver Linux-Based E-Commerce

E-commerce solutions provider INTERSHOP Communications, Inc. has announced a strategic partnership with server appliance developer Cobalt Networks, Inc. (Nasdaq: COBT) to deliver a Linux-based e-commerce appliance.

The new Intershop RaQ will combine Intershop Merchant for Red Hat Linux with Cobalt’s RaQ 3 server appliance, enabling service providers and others to offer an e-commerce hosting solution that, according to the companies, “eliminates complex configuration tasks and reduces server set-up time to a few minutes.”

Broad Offerings

“Cobalt’s strategy is to extend Web hosting by delivering complete turnkey application-specific server appliances that enable Service Providers to broaden their offerings,” commented Mark Orr, Cobalt’s vice president of business development and co-founder. “Intershop Merchant combined with Cobalt RaQ server appliances offers small to medium sized businesses the full benefits of a true plug and play e-commerce solution.”

The Cobalt RaQ products are pre-configured with the Linux OS, an Apache Web server, the Sendmail server and Front Page server extensions, providing the core services to enable service providers and developers to build and make online business solutions available.

About the Companies

INTERSHOP is a provider of sell-side e-commerce software solutions for the business-to-business (B2B) and business-to-consumer (B2C) markets. Their customers include telecommunications companies and commerce service providers such as AltaVista, Bell South, Concentric, MindSpring, PSINet, and Ticketmaster Online-CitySearch. Enterprise e-commerce clients that run INTERSHOP solutions include Celestial Seasonings, Mercedes Benz U.S. International and Silicon Graphics.

Cobalt server appliances are designed to allow companies with relatively non-technical personnel to set up and operate servers with Internet applications, such as Web hosting and e-mail, without any knowledge of operating systems or the underlying software that drives the servers. Company products include the Cobalt Cache, NASRaQ, and Qube Internet appliance.

The Mountain View, California-based company went public in a high-profile IPO in November of 1999 that zoomed from an offering price of $22 (US$) to about $128 on its opening day of trading. The stock closed today at $126.75 on volume of 224,300 shares.

The company, which had revenues of $13.8 million for the nine months ended September 30, 1999, has a market capitalization of about $3.5 billion, showing that investors have a strong belief in the conceptual need for easy-to-use server appliances.

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