artnet AG Berlin

ots Ad hoc-Service: AG announces results for 1999 Substantial investments in marketing and technology Rapid growth in traffic Revenues nearly triple in comparison with 1998

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    Frankfurt (ots Ad hoc-Service) -      
, the leading web site for art information and e-commerce, has announced its results for 1999. artnet.coms strategic goal is to modernize the buying and selling of art by providing advertising, information services and transaction services through the Internet. To this end, the company undertook substantial investments in marketing, technology infrastructure, staff development and product design in 1999. Also in 1999, raised $26.7 million through an initial public offering on the Neuer Markt in Frankfurt in order to finance the companys expansion.

    In connection with its growth strategy, commenced a sustained marketing and branding campaign in 1999, focusing initially on the U.S. market, the largest art market as well as the market where Internet usage is most advanced. This campaign included a marketing alliance with America Online (AOL), which provides with access to AOL web sites in the United States and Germany. As a result of these marketing efforts, registered a significant increase in traffic on its site, from 1 million page views in June to 2.2 million in December 1999, and from 170,000 visits in June to 1.6 million in December. also made substantial investments in professional management, staff and technology infrastructure in order to develop its growth platform, enhance its product offering and to increase the speed, security and traffic capacity of its web platform.

    As a result of these combined efforts, nearly tripled its revenues from $0.9 million in 1998 to $2.6 million in 1999. Revenues were derived primarily from advertising on the online gallery network ($1.9 million) and subscriptions to the companys Fine Arts Auction Database ($0.5 million). Auction revenue and bookstore revenue, both of which are in the early phases of development, generated the remaining revenue.

    In connection with artnet.coms major investments in marketing, technology and staff, total operating expenses rose to $15.8 million for 1999, up from $4.1 million in 1998. In 1999, operating expenses included $4.4 million in non-cash items in comparison with $0.6 million in 1998. For 1999 the company recorded a net loss after provision for income taxes and minority interest of $10.7 million in comparison with a loss of $3.2 million in 1998. Earnings per share was a loss of $2.58 in comparison with $ 1.10 in 1998. The company finished the year with $16.5 million in cash. These results were in line with company and market expectations.

    For 2000, the company intends to continue its expansion with higher investments than in 1999. The company anticipates that revenues will accelerate more rapidly than expenses as a result of its successful and widening penetration of both the U.S. and European markets.

    Contact persons for

    Grace E. Schalkwyk, VP Corporate Development 61 Broadway, 23rd Floor New York, NY 10006

    Tel.: 001-212-497-9700 x256 Fax: 001-212-497-9707

    Further information from

    Dr. Michael Rust Burson-Marsteller GmbH Untermainkai 20 D-60329 Frankfurt Tel.: +49(0) 69-2 38 09 23 Fax: +49(0) 69-2 38 09 - 75

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