Wednesday June 16, 1:24 pm, Eastern Time
Company Press Release
TownPagesNet.com plc Completes US IPO and Begins First UK National Roll Out of Free Internet Access Points
ALTON, England--(BUSINESS WIRE)--June 16, 1999--TownPagesNet.com
plc (AMEX:TPN - news), the company that plans to install Public Information
Points (PIP's) permitting free access to its Internet-based
TownPages® locally focused portal service in every major town and
city in the UK, has completed a successful IPO in the US.
The IPO, which was completed on May 5th, involved a public
offering of 2.2 million American Depository Shares which are listed
for trading on the American Stock Exchange.
Andrew Lyndon-Skeggs, Managing Director of TownPagesNet.com plc
pointed out that, according to Jupiter Communications, ``there is
currently no nationally recognized Internet distribution portal in the
UK; in Europe the battle to be the leading distribution portal is
still to be fought.''
``We intend to take advantage of the relatively underdeveloped UK
market place and establish ourselves as the leading Internet portal in
the UK before expanding into Europe. ''In the UK Internet Market, UK
Internet users have grown from 7 million to 10 million in the past
three months,`` according to Felicity Jackson of New Media Investor. We
believe that this growth has been caused by the introduction of free
Internet access. A Jupiter Communications study says that ''the free to
air Internet model is a serious area of growth in the UK Internet
market. With the new model of unmetered usage in the UK and European
markets we are about to see exponential growth similar to the growth
that the US witnessed when metered access was lifted in 1996.``
Andrew Lyndon-Skeggs continued, noting that according to a recent
Jupiter Communications study, ``Europe currently has 150 million
households with 34% PC penetration, the US has 110 million households
with 57% PC penetration. By 2003 this is forecast to grow to 45% PC
penetration in Europe and 65% penetration in the U.S. Current online
users in Europe are estimated to reach 47 million by 2003, in the US
there are currently estimated to be 44 million users, rising to 67
million users by 2003.''
``We will be the first to proceed with a national roll out in the
UK of approximately 3,450 PIP's permitting free access to our
Internet-based TownPages® locally focused portal service at our
PIP's for the UK population not already on-line. TownPages® is a UK
distribution portal with UK wide locally focused content which is
rolling out its service via the PIP's to towns and cities across the
UK. Persons using our PIP's also will be able to use TownPages® free
`Due to the current rapid growth of the UK Internet market, we
intend to expand our service through synergistic acquisitions and
other means which will enable us to roll out TownPages® service at a
rapid pace. The Company is considering several potential acquisition
`Our successful IPO has given us additional working capital to
take forward the roll out of our services``, commented Andrew
Lyndon-Skeggs, Managing Director of TownPagesNet.com plc.
The 3,450 touch screen Public Information Points will be
installed in high streets, shopping centers and railway stations and
other high foot fall locations. The Company is also continuing to
build relationships with UK local authorities, offering to install a
number of TownPages® PIP's in each community it enters free of
charge, in return for use of applicable community information.
In order to achieve its goals, the Company is expanding its I.T.
infrastructure and staff resources and is working on establishing
strategic alliances with corporate partners.
Andrew Lyndon-Skeggs commented, ``We are now rapidly expanding the
local community information that is at the heart of our service. Since
the IPO, the structure of the local section of the TownPages®
Website has been expanded from coverage of approximately 120 towns to
coverage of approximately 1,300 towns and cities. This sits alongside
the National section of the Website into which we are introducing a
range of major Website Channels including subjects such as cars,
holidays, education, sport and health, interacting with and enhancing
the local service. We have given contracts for third parties to be
exclusive content providers for eight of these channels and we are
working actively in pursuit of more. The first to be released is
likely to be an on-line car distribution channel, trading as
Allcars.com, with on-line auctioning. We believe that this will make
TownPages® a leading UK distribution portal. Our commitment to
building the leading UK Internet brand and taking the benefits of the
Internet to everyone is total.''
TownPages website can be found at www.townpages.co.uk
``Safe Harbor'' statement under the Private Securities Litigation
Reform Act of 1995: This release contains forward-looking statements
that are subject to risks and uncertainties, including, but not
limited to, the impact of competitive products and pricing, product
demand and market acceptance, reliance on key strategic alliances,
fluctuations in operating results and other risks detailed from time
to time in the Company's filings with the Securities and Exchange
A. Lyndon-Skeggs Mike Rigby H.L. LANZET, INC.
TownPages Countrywide Herbert Lanzet/DeeDee Lanzet
4401420 543468 4401295 224400 212-687-0061
Newsbit furnished by:
A: NetShift Software Ltd.
A: Hughenden Yard, Marlborough, Wilts,SN8 1LT, UK
T: +44 (0)1672 511 094
F: +44 (0)1672 511 078