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KOZ.com Completes Acquisition of Ichat Product Line

North Carolina-based KOZ.com said it has completed its acquisition of the ichat product line and customer base from Acuity Corp. and will make ichat's real-time chat, message boards and instant messaging products available from its Web site.

KOZ.com helps real- world communities extend themselves onto the Internet. It sells its flagship Community Publishing System (CPS) product to publishers and others that want to set up Web communities based on organizations, families, schools and other groups. Terms of the ichat acquisition were not disclosed.

"With the completion of this important acquisition, KOZ.com now offers a complete spectrum of interactive online community tools and programs," said Bruce Milligan, vice president of marketing for KOZ.com. "We can address the needs of any customer who wants to create online communities at whatever level is appropriate. . ."

KOZ.com said it is updating all ichat client and server products and, separately, will integrate them into its CPS product. New versions of all ichat products and CPS will be available early in the third quarter of 1999.

In addition to the product software code, KOZ.com also received:

  • The rights to service 650,000 members of the ichat Pager (instant messaging) and Open24 chat services
  • 2,100 corporate clients that have licensed ichat products in the past three years
  • The consumer and corporate sales prospect databases
  • ichat's database of nearly two million opt-in e-mail addresses

KOZ.com also said that Knight Ridder New Media, a division of Knight Ridder, will roll out CPS within its Real Cities network. Financial arrangements were not disclosed.

The company also launched its Affiliate Marketing ToolKit that provides local media outlets with all the information, resources and coaching required to launch a successful community Web site. Additionally, KOZ.com announced that MediaNews Group and Donrey Media will roll out CPS to 175 local newspaper sites.

KOZ.com was co-founded by Frank Daniels, III, who served as executive editor of the Raleigh News and Observer and founded the pioneering Nando.net news site.