Stock Watch: VerticalNet Announces European Expansion

Shares of VerticalNet (Nasdaq: VERT), which operates business-to-business (B2B) trading communities across various industries, climbed nearly six percent on Tuesday. The company rose 13-7/8 to 252-1/8 after announcing the formation of VerticalNet Europe, a joint venture with British Telecommunications (BT) and Internet Capital Group. VerticalNet is the majority shareholder of the new venture, which is being funded with $227 million in cash and other assets from the three companies.

VerticalNet was boosted last month when Microsoft invested $100 million in it, and the new European venture solidifies the company’s position as a business-to-business e-commerce leader. The financial markets have been shaky recently, but this stock could keep climbing. After the markets closed on Tuesday, VerticalNet announced a two-for-one stock split.

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