Priceline.com / Bookings B.V.

Priceline.com announced today that it has acquired Amsterdam-based Bookings B.V., one of Europe's leading Internet hotel reservation services, in a cash transaction valued at approximately EUR110 million, or US$133 million. The deal follows priceline.com's recent acquisition of Cambridge-based Active Hotels in September 2004.

In total, Bookings B.V. and Active Hotels have negotiated exclusive rates with almost 18,000 properties, which the companies believe is more than any other European Internet hotel reservation service. Priceline.com said it intends to retain Bookings' current management team, which will continue to manage Bookings as part of the Priceline.com Europe portfolio. Priceline.com also said that Bookings' six top executives reinvested a portion of the acquisition proceeds back into the Bookings business.

Bookings works with a range of chain- and independently owned hotels across Europe and in major cities around the world. Established in 1996, the company has approximately 130 full-time employees and offices in Amsterdam, Barcelona, Berlin, Paris and Pisa. Bookings' customer service team offers its services in Dutch, English, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Spanish and Portuguese.

Shares of Priceline.com, which closed up 1.8 percent at $23.49 on Nasdaq, gained 5 percent at $24.70 in after-hours trading.

(c) Reuters


VeriSign / iDEFENSE

VeriSign, Inc., the leading provider of intelligent infrastructure services for the Internet and telecommunications networks, today announced that it has acquired Reston, VA-based security intelligence firm iDEFENSE for approximately $40 million in cash.

iDEFENSE is a leader in providing comprehensive, actionable intelligence regarding network-based security threats and vulnerabilities to the world's largest financial services firms, government agencies, retailers and other large enterprises. The company's multi-lingual network of more than 200 research contributors in over 30 countries offers early and unique insight into the cyber underground and previously unknown software vulnerabilities. The iDEFENSE research product portfolio includes iAlert Daily Delivery and FLASH Reports, Weekly Threat Reports and Focused Intelligence Reports that customers use to modify security infrastructure and respond to threats on a real-time basis.

(c) PRNewswire-FirstCall


General Atlantic - Quadrangle / Dice

Dice Inc., the leading provider of online recruiting services for technology, engineering and security-cleared professionals, today announced that two leading private equity firms, General Atlantic LLC and Quadrangle Group LLC, have agreed to acquire the Company's equity from the current private investor owners. The current management team will continue to lead the Company and remain significant equity holders in Dice. The two firms are equal partners in the transaction; further terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

General Atlantic LLC operates globally, investing in companies providing or using information technology to transform industries and drive growth. Quadrangle Group LLC's private equity funds invest in high-growth, as well as more mature, media and communications companies in the United States and Europe.

(c) PRNewswire

Hellman & Friedman - JMI Equity / DoubleClick

DoubleClick Inc. said Tuesday that shareholders approved by large margins a $1.1 billion buyout led by a private-equity group.

In a Securities and Exchange Commission filing, Internet-advertising company DoubleClick said 90 percent of investors at its annual meeting voted in favor of the acquisition by San Francisco-based Hellman & Friedman LLC and JMI Equity, which is based in Baltimore and San Diego.

The shares cast in favor of the deal represented 58 percent of the total number of DoubleClick's outstanding shares entitled to vote at the meeting, the company said.

Under terms of the deal announced in April, DoubleClick stockholders will receive $8.50 for each share they hold. DoubleClick said in the filing Tuesday that the acquisition is expected to close "as soon as practicable," pending the satisfaction or waiver of some closing conditions.

Shares of New York-based DoubleClick rose 2 cents to close at $8.45 Tuesday on the Nasdaq Stock Market. After peaking at $135.25 in early 2000, DoubleClick's shares have been stuck in a prolong slump that reflects the company's troubles since the dot-com bust.

(c) AP


iCarMagic / DealerSite.com

iCarMagic LLC today announced that it has completed the acquisition of DealerSite.com, a website production company for automobile dealers. The acquisition allows iCarMagic to assume control over DealerSite's client base, key employees, and certain company assets. Combining iCarMagic' technical team with DealerSite's skilled creative staff will position iCarMagic as one of the strongest Web development companies serving the automotive retailing space.

This is the first acquisition for iCarMagic and is an integral aspect of their overall growth strategy which included the successful recruitment of Bernie Mock, formerly with Reynolds and Reynolds, to their team as Visionary Catalyst. iCarMagic is the fastest growing customer relationship management software company aimed at the expansive automobile retailing marketplace and is an approved solution for most of the major automobile manufacturers in the United States. The company creates Customer relationship software, internet lead management solutions, inventory management systems and now executes Web design and marketing programs.


ChannelAdvisor / SearchMarketing.Com

ChannelAdvisor, the leading provider of channel management solutions (CMS), today announced that it has acquired SearchMarketing, the leader in natural and paid search optimization for online merchants (retailers and manufacturers). The acquisition will allow ChannelAdvisor to enhance its channel management solutions by adding a comprehensive natural and paid search suite.

Founded in 1999 by Kevin McCarthy, SearchMarketing manages over 1.5 million keywords for over thirty retail clients. SearchMarketing's technology is directly integrated with the Google and Yahoo! Search Marketing web service APIs. SearchMarketing works with 24 of the top 400 Internet retailers.


GMO Internet / Solis

GMO Internet Inc. (GMO), the largest and most diversified online services provider in Japan, has agreed to acquire Solis Corporation, operating under the brand name, ''Japan Registry'', a leading ICANN-accredited domain registrar and the leading distributor of Japanese domain names worldwide, in the form of a share swap valued at 1.125 billion yen.

GMO is Japan's leader in the online infrastructure services business, providing a full suite of solutions to its clients ranging from web hosting to online security to credit card payment processes. The company's mission is to develop online infrastructure services in a range of complementary service areas with the goal of creating synergies across its businesses. As part of their ''Media Group Strategy'', GMO is actively assembling Best-of-Breed providers to create a diversified set of solutions for all elements of online and e-commerce infrastructure services.

Solis Corporation fits extremely well within this synergistic philosophy. Solis Corporation is Best-of-Breed in its areas of focus, bringing clear leadership in both the international domain marketplace as well as brand management services for Japanese corporations. It maintains a comprehensive international partnership network that includes many of the largest Internet infrastructure providers around the world, as well as a strong network of tens of thousands of Japanese partners and end-customers. Meanwhile, Solis' corporate brand management services practice specializes in providing full-service brand-management and intellectual property advisory services to leading Japanese corporations.

(c) Xinhua-PRNewswire-FirstCall


Dialog Group / AdValiant

Dialog Group, Inc. has announced the completion of its merger with the online performance marketing network AdValiant, Inc.

AdValiant runs an affiliate network through its own proprietary platform VALTRACK and has developed several new highly customizable online technologies that enhance advertising and marketing performance. The merger will add to Dialog Group's existing suite of technology and data-based solutions and services that enable marketers to effectively advertise, generate leads, and manage customers.

AdValiant will become one of Dialog Group's three operating units along with Data Dialog and Dialog Group Communications. Dialog Group will consolidate its online media group and Mymedcenter.com into AdValiant. Mymedcenter.com syndicates medical and health content to 87 national TV and radio stations Web sites. AdValiant will also continue to offer co-registration, lead generation, search engine optimization, Adialogin and media buying. Data Dialog will provide data services, consumer surveys, lead generation, list management, direct marketing services as well as data compilation and append. Dialog Group Communications will offer communication services, account services, creative, CRM, and interactive.



Zhone Technologies / Paradyne Networks

Zhone Technologies, Inc., the first company dedicated solely to delivering the full spectrum of next-generation access infrastructure equipment, today announced that it will acquire Paradyne Networks, Inc., a leading provider of triple play broadband loop carriers (BLCs) and Ethernet access equipment.

Under the terms of the agreement, Zhone will issue 1.0972 shares of Zhone common stock for each outstanding share of Paradyne common stock, and each option, warrant and other security exercisable or convertible into Paradyne common stock will be assumed by Zhone and become exercisable or convertible into Zhone common stock, with appropriate adjustments based on the merger exchange ratio. Based on Zhone's closing price yesterday, the transaction is valued at $3.917 per Paradyne common share. On a fully-diluted basis, the current stockholders of Paradyne will own approximately 36.8% of the combined company and the current stockholders of Zhone will own approximately 63.2% of the combined company. The proposed stock-for-stock transaction is intended to qualify as tax-free to the stockholders of Paradyne.


Cars.com / NewCars.com

Cars.com, the fastest growing online automotive marketplace, today announced that it has acquired NewCars.com, a leader in automotive sales lead generation. The acquisition expands cars.com's presence in the new car market and enables the company to expand its dealer-advertising offering. Cars.com is a division of Classified Ventures, a strategic joint venture owned by six leading media companies. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

NewCars.com is one of the industry's largest generators of new car automotive purchase requests, and derives prospects from Search Engine Marketing initiatives across name-brand search engines. By using its proprietary key word management and bidding system, NewCars.com targets true vehicle intenders and effectively drives these shoppers from search to sale by connecting them with dealers.

(c) PRNewswire


GoAmerica / Hands On

GoAmerica, Inc., a leading provider of wireless and Internet relay communications services for the deaf and hard-of-hearing market, and Hands On, a leading provider of video relay and interpreter services for the deaf and hard-of-hearing market, today announced they have entered into a definitive merger agreement.

Under the terms of the agreement approved by both boards of directors, Hands On shareholders will receive an amount of GoAmerica shares approximately equal to the number of GoAmerica shares outstanding immediately prior to closing. Completion of the transaction is subject to shareholder approval by the shareholders of both companies and other customary closing conditions. The principal shareholders of Hands On have agreed to vote their shares in favor of the merger.

(c) PRNewswire-FirstCall


Juniper Networks / Peribit Networks

Juniper Networks, Inc. today announced it has completed the acquisition of Peribit Networks, Inc., a leader in Wide Area Network (WAN) optimization technology. Juniper Networks announced a definitive agreement to acquire Peribit Networks on April 26, 2005.

Headquartered in Santa Clara and founded in early 2000, Peribit Networks develops WAN optimization appliances. Peribit Networks' platforms and software provide customers with increased WAN capacity, faster application performance, prioritized application delivery and system-wide visibility of network and application performance. Peribit Networks' solutions enable applications to run dramatically better over the WAN. Its products have been installed in over 900 enterprise customers worldwide.



CheetahMail / Harvest Solutions

CheetahMail, an Experian company, announced today the acquisition of Harvest Solutions, a premier provider of web site analytics. Through this acquisition, CheetahMail will seamlessly integrate Harvest's innovative web analysis and reporting software, now called SiteClarity, with its email platform to help companies effectively manage customer communication delivered through the internet.

According to a recent JupiterResearch report, "The ROI of Email Relevance," 41% of marketers plan to deploy tools to incorporate clickstream into their e-mail targeting tactics in the next 12 months.

CheetahMail will offer its email marketing and SiteClarity web analytics solution as a fully integrated offering as well as distinct products. In addition to offering SiteClarity, CheetahMail will continue to maintain its existing partnerships with other leading web site analytic companies, helping clients to achieve greater online success.

The acquisition is consistent with Experian's strategy to acquire complementary technology businesses that add further depth to Experian's broad product reach. Terms of the acquisition were not announced.

(c) PRNewswire

Smith Micro Software / Allume Systems Inc.

Smith Micro Software Inc., a developer and marketer of a wide range of software and services for the wireless market, today announced it has acquired Allume Systems, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of International Microcomputer Software Inc. (IMSI). Allume is a leading provider of compression software solutions that enable state of the art compression, security and archiving of data including JPEG, MPEG and MP3 platforms. The Company's pioneering product suite known as StuffIt® has been a de facto industry standard since 1986.

Through the agreement, Smith Micro will pay $11 million in cash and $1.75 million in Smith Micro shares to purchase all outstanding shares of Allume. During the first calendar quarter of 2005, Allume contributed $2.5 million to IMSI's $6.4 million net revenue. We believe the acquisition is accretive immediately to Smith Micro.

(c) PRNewswire-FirstCall


Opodo / Vivacances

Nouvelle étape de la concentration en cours parmi les voyagistes en ligne, après le rapprochement annoncé mi-mai entre Travelocity et Lasminute : le groupe Opodo, basé à Londres, a annoncé l'acquisition de l'agence de voyage en ligne française Vivacances, pour un montant resté confidentiel. Lancée en 2002 par les Galeries Lafayette, Vivacances propose une offre de voyage et de loisirs allant des réservations aériennes et ferroviaires aux locations de véhicules, en passant par des réservations d'hôtels et des forfaits week-ends. Le groupe français revendique un taux de croissance de son activité de 276% entre le 1er trimestre 2004 et le 1er trimestre 2005.

Avec le rachat de Vivacances, Opodo, contrôlé par l'opérateur de systèmes de réservation Amadeus, possède désormais trois marques de voyages en ligne en France, pays qu'il considère comme un « marché clé » : Opodo.fr, Promovacances (Karavel) et Vivacances. Opodo pense réaliser cette année « entre 430 et 470 millions d'euros » de chiffre d'affaires en France. L'Hexagone est le deuxième marché du voyage en ligne européen avec l'une des croissances les plus rapides et un volume d'affaires prévu de 7 milliards d'euros pour 2005.

(c) lesechos.fr


Nelnet / Foresite Solutions

Nelnet, Inc. announced today the acquisition of Foresite Solutions, Inc., based in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Founded in 2000, Foresite develops complementary Web-based software applications that improve the administration of financial aid offices and work-study programs at colleges and universities.

Foresite's inaugural applications, ProjectionX, JobX, and TimesheetX, run administrative processes tied to financial aid and student employment offices at colleges and universities and gain their core functionality from a proprietary software framework, Chameleon. ProjectionX is a multi-year financial projections tool utilized by financial aid offices. JobX is a work study management tool used by college student employment offices. TimesheetX collects and processes Web-based time sheets from work study students.

The acquisition expands the marketing agreement between the companies that allowed Nelnet to co-brand and sell Foresite products to schools.

Nelnet is one of the leading education finance companies in the United States and is focused on providing quality products and services to students and schools nationwide. Nelnet ranks among the nation's leaders in terms of total net student loan assets with $14.5 billion as of March 31, 2005. Headquartered in Lincoln, Nebraska, Nelnet originates, consolidates, securitizes, holds, and services student loans, principally loans originated under the Federal Family Education Loan Program of the U.S. Department of Education.

(c) PRNewswire-FirstCall

Jupitermedia / PictureArts

Jupitermedia Corp. on Friday said it has agreed to acquire PictureArts Corp., an online photo agency, for $63.2 million in cash, to expand its commercial image licensing business.

PictureArts creates, licenses and distributes photos to the advertising and design industries. Its libraries include photos of food, nature and individual portraits, according to its Web site.

Jupitermedia, which sponsors events and issues research and publications for the information technology industry, said the acquisition will make it a leading player in the business of commercial image licensing, and bolster its standing among buyers of high-end photos.

The acquisition includes PictureArts' Brand X Pictures, FoodPix, Botanica and Nonstock brands, and its image distribution business, the company said.

Jupitermedia said it expects the deal will add to its earnings and close in this year's third quarter, pending regulatory approval and other closing conditions.

The company said it plans to finance the purchase with cash on hand and borrowed money from a credit facility at JPMorgan Chase Bank NA.

Jupitermedia shares rose 47 cents, or 2.7 percent, to $17.60 in midday trading on the Nasdaq.

(c) AP


AGF PE - Cita / Telemarket.fr

Une page se tourne dans le petit monde des supermarchés en ligne: Galeries Lafayette a réussi à céder Telemarket. Sans surprise, les repreneurs sont ceux évoqués par la presse ces dernières semaines, à savoir les fonds AGF Private Equity et Cita. Dans cette opération, ils soutiennent le fondateur du site de voyage Travelprice, Roland Coutas, et le directeur général de Telemarket, Olivier Le Gargean.

"Cette opération assure la pérennité de l'entreprise et ouvre de bonnes perspectives de développement pour Telemarket.fr et pour nos 250 collaborateurs. Nous allons pouvoir accélérer notre croissance, qui est déjà à deux chiffres depuis le début de l'année 2005", a déclaré Olivier Le Gargean, qui occupe le poste de directeur général depuis 2002.

Le prix de la transaction n'a pas été communiqué. Mais si l'on se fie à une note relative à l'OPA de la Semad, le holding de la famille Moulin sur les Galeries (lire ci-contre), les repreneurs n'auraient pas eu à ouvrir largement leurs bourses. La note des banques valorise à zéro le supermarché en ligne "étant donné les pertes d'exploitation en 2003 et 2004 [8,7 et 7,1 millions d'euros, ndlr]. En 2000, au moment de la bulle Internet, lorsque Casino et Monoprix sont entrés au capital de Telemarket, l'entreprise était valorisée 122 millions d'euros.

En cédant Telemarket, Galeries Lafayette veut surtout sauver les meubles en se débarrassant d'un foyer de pertes. En 2003, elles étaient encore de 2,6 millions d'euros, pour des ventes de 40,5 millions. L'année précédente, le déficit était de 13,7 millions pour un chiffre d'affaires de 42,7 millions d'euros. Outre des pertes chroniques, force est de constater que le supermarché en ligne est confronté à la stagnation de son activité. Car l'année 2004 n'a pas été non plus placée sous le signe de la croissance. Dans son communiqué, Telemarket annonce un chiffre d'affaires de 40 millions d'euros.

Par rapport à un supermarché classique, les supermarchés en ligne ont en effet du mal à trouver la rentabilité en raison des frais de livraisons qu'ils doivent demander à leurs clients, et qui finalement constituent un frein à l'achat. Les Galeries Lafayette ont déjà tenté de vendre leur pesant fardeau il y a quatre ans, mais les discussions alors menées avec Casino avaient échoué sur le prix jugé excessif. Depuis, Casino a lui-même fermé son propre magasin en ligne. Avant d'accepter la proposition des deux fonds, Galeries Lafayette a envisagé un rapprochement de Telemarket avec un concurrent tel que Ooshop (Carrefour) ou Houra (Cora).

(c) latribune.fr