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IBM Continues to Deliver on e-Portal Strategy, Unveils WebSphere Portal Server and Agreements with Leading Content Providers

Portal Software Offers Single Point of Access to Applications, Data and Web-based Content from PC's and Wireless Devices

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Somers, NY, - 21 Mar 2001: Making a significant addition to its e-business infrastructure, IBM today delivered the WebSphere Portal Server, the next step in its e-portal strategy. The software enables companies to build next generation portals that offer users a personalized, secure, single point of access for content, applications, processes, and people - - anywhere, anytime and from any device, wired or wireless.

The WebSphere Portal Server is a complete horizontal portal and it exploits the scalability and power of WebSphere Application Server, IBM's core technology for web-based applications; IBM Enterprise Information Portal for information access; Lotus software for collaboration and knowledge management, and WebSphere Everyplace Suite for pervasive device support.

IBM also is expanding its partner program to take advantage of the rapidly growing market opportunities in portals. IBM's PartnerWorld for Developers will be the entry point for solution developers to participate in portal integration.

The enhanced partner program is being launched initially with four business partners who will offer WebSphere Portal Server and Lotus K-station users access to more than 30,000 content sources ranging from stocks, industry news, world news, weather, sports and much more.

The content providers are:

"Portals have become a critical component of the software ecosystem and will have a role in the emerging category of Web services," said Gene Phifer, vice president and research director, Gartner. "Two extremely important portal functions are content aggregation and data/application integration. These are requirements for facilitating interaction and integration with employees, customers, partners, suppliers and distributors."

A Complete Horizontal Portal Framework
WebSphere Portal Server provides an open, scalable framework for enabling the aggregation of applications and information from various content sources, including corporate data and the Internet, into a personalized portal. IBM's portal software offers navigation, customization, personalization, information and application interaction, pervasive device support, syndicated content access, integration for federated search and categorization, and user or group administration.

Enterprises can create portals that enable mobile users to interact with the applications and information they need to do their jobs from virtually anywhere, at any time.

"WebSphere Portal Server is the core of IBM's portal strategy," said Larry Bowden, vice president, e-Portal Solutions, IBM Software Group. "It integrates the front-end, back-end services, application server, and tooling needed by customers to solve the breadth of their B2C, B2B and B2E needs."

Pre-integrated portlets to speed deployment
A portal application, known as a portlet, is a window into specific content or an application source. The WebSphere Portal Server provides customized portlets that support PCs, mobile phones, Personal Digital Assistants (PDAs) and other pervasive devices.

IBM is committed to participating in establishing industry standards to support a broad portfolio of portlets working across all components of IBM's portal strategy and the portal community at large. Additional portlets for use by WebSphere Portal Server, Lotus K-station, and other portals built on top of WebSphere Portal Server will ship continuously throughout 2001.

Lotus K-station provides collaboration capabilities
A major component of IBM's portal software strategy is Lotus's K-station, software specifically focused on knowledge management and collaboration. Lotus K-station is a ready-made, collaborative portal application that organizes and manages multi-lingual, unstructured business content by community, interest, task or job focus.

WebSphere Portal Server is an infrastructure for building many types of portals across B2B, B2C, and B2E and will be used as part of the K-station solution in line with IBM's portal strategy. Lotus's Sametime messaging and Quickplace team room, plus other Lotus products, will be available as portlets for customers to use in their portal implementations.

Information access and integration
Advanced information integration well beyond the traditional access and view capabilities provided by most portals is achieved with the integration of WebSphere Portal Server and IBM's Enterprise Information Portal. Extended capabilities include categorization, summarization, workflow, connectors to a wide variety of data sources, and in addition to view, the ability to perform create, retrieve, update, and delete functions in enterprise processes.

Extensive pervasive device support
WebSphere Portal Server, when used in conjunction with WebSphere Everyplace Suite, supports a wide variety of mobile devices for interacting with portals. WebSphere Portal Server generates HTML (Hyper Text Markup Language) content that can be rendered by browsers on PCs, and WML (Wireless Markup Language) content that is typically available on WAP phones and PDAs. In April, 2001, WebSphere Portal Server will be enhanced to support i-mode devices.

Portal consulting and implementation services
The WebSphere Portal Server is the latest addition to IBM's portal strategy that also includes offerings from IBM Global Services. The Corporate Portal Offering includes specific tools and techniques to customize content, applications, and people-to-people linkages for each customer. IGS also offers the Portal Jumpstart--an architecture package that can be installed in two weeks and delivers a targeted implementation strategy based on IGS's experience in implementing portals.

IBM Business Partner en technologies corporation has been working closely with IBM and customers on WebSphere Portal Server. "IBM's portal strategy brings order to an extremely complex marketplace," said Sal Patalano, CEO, en technologies corporation. "WebSphere Portal Server provides a mission-critical, horizontal portal platform that simplifies architectural and deployment issues, while leveraging existing skills and back-end systems within an organization."

WebSphere Portal Server is available today on AIX and will support Windows NT and Solaris in April, 2001. It is single- and double-byte enabled. Pricing is based on the number of users and the cost per user decreases as the number of users increases. WebSphere Portal Server also will be available with per CPU pricing.

IBM Corporation
IBM is the world's largest information technology company, with 80 years of leadership in helping businesses innovate. IBM Software offers the widest range of applications, middleware and operating systems for all types of computing platforms, allowing customers to take full advantage of the new era of e-business. The fastest way to get more information about IBM software is through the IBM Software home page at http://www.software.ibm.com.

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* WebSphere, Everyplace and AIX are trademarks of International Business Machines Corporation.

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