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AltaVista Expands International Presence

AltaVista Company Friday launched AltaVista India.

The new site offers free Web-based e-mail services and advanced searching functionality to help users find the information they need quickly and easily.

Additionally, users of AltaVista India will have access to AltaVista's index of more than 350 million Web pages and its 30 million audio, video and image multimedia documents.

The new site offers a vast index of available Indian Web sites available, covering more than 1.25 million Web pages.

Officials said the site was launched to satisfy the ethnic community's need for a content-specific Web site as well as contribute to Alta Vista's plans for international growth.

"There are more than 250,000 unique users per month from India who were already visiting altavista.com," said Martin Keogh, AltaVista's director of international business development.

"AltaVista India will provide that community with a resource to find information by using our technology to access search results and a compelling reason to visit AltaVista," he said.

The debut of AltaVista India marks the creation of the seventh country-specific site in as many months to offer local content and search services.

According to IDC estimates, there are more than 1 million Internet users in India. This figure is predicted to grow to 12 million by the end of 2003.

Further, more than $10 million currently is being spent annually on e-commerce in India; that figure is expected to grow to $1 billion by 2003.