The agreement with ABI makes the Englewood-based YellowNet one of the largest commercial search-and-retrieval databases on the Internet, which is a cooperative pooling of global computer information available without charge to users. More than 40 million people today have access to the Internet - a number that is growing by 10 to 15 percent per month.
ABI's massive database lists the telephone number and address of 11 million businesses. YellowNet will immediately begin posting that database on the Internet.
YellowNet affiliates will then market advertisements that use a company's business listing as an entry point to complete text and graphics - at less than one-fifth the cost quoted to current Internet advertisers. The YellowNet World-Wide Pages(sm) is the first comprehensive system to index company information and advertisements for quick retrieval.
ABI, headquartered in Omaha, Neb., is a leading provider of business information on the 11 million businesses in the United States and Canada. More than 450,000 customers use ABI products and services to generate sales leads, reduce sales costs and improve the efficiency of their credit decisions.
YellowNet previously announced contracts to begin selling electronic advertisements in several major U.S. metropolitan areas. The agreement for use of the complete ABI business-telephone database speeds the expansion of `electronic yellow pages` beyond those seven current markets by six months to a year, according to John Najdovski, executive vice president of the Englewood-based YellowNet. Territorial agreements for additional affiliates are expected to be announced soon, along with details of further international expansion of the World-Wide Pages.
`We are excited to be a part of this landmark for the Internet,` said Bill Kerrey, ABI's vice president for strategic alliances. `Our feeling is that the Internet is a great opportunity for information-service providers and users. And especially exciting for ABI is the ability for people to move easily from the World-Wide Pages to the ABI site on the Internet where they can access our entire line of products and services.`
Over the next 30 days, the 11 million business listings will be converted to computer language and loaded onto an Internet database called YellowNet World-Wide Pages(sm), according to Najdovski. When completed, anyone anywhere can get the telephone number of any business in the United States and Canada with simple computer hardware, software and a modem. Businesses will have their local telephone numbers listed at no charge, and without needing to take any action to have it done.
Najdovski said companies can Hyperlink their existing Web site, or connect other existing information to their database listing. Advertising is accessed through YellowNet's proprietary search engine - OmniSearch(sm) - which highlights information through the use of Hypertext, a procedure now commonly in use on the Internet.
`In technical terms, what we're doing here is not horribly sophisticated compared to virtual reality or video technologies being experimented with,` Najdovski said. `But this is action - not just some theoretical application of an electronic possibility. World-Wide Pages is something really useful as a starting point for the 40 million Internet users and has tremendous significance to the companies who want to gain exposure to that market.
`This is the first comprehensive commercial application for the Internet - the first time all the wonderful technology out there has been applied in a practical way,` Najdovski said. `It is comparable to having the yellow pages phone book of every city, town and community in the U.S. and Canada stacked in your closet - except there's no paper and no storage problem.` -0-
Note to Editors: American Business Information Inc. is headquartered at 5711 S. 86th Circle, P.O. Box 27347, Omaha, Neb., 68127-0347. The telephone number is 402/593-4500. ABI's stock is traded on NASDAQ under the symbol ABII.
CONTACT: YellowNet Corp., Englewood John Najdovski, 303/781-6121 KEYWORD: COLORADO INDUSTRY KEYWORD: TELECOMMUNICATIONS REPEATS: New York 212-575-8822 or 800-221-2462; Boston 617-330-5311 or 800-225-2030; SF 415-986-4422 or 800-227-0845; LA 310-820-9473 AP-NY-04-26-95 0703EDT
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