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InfoSpace.com Acquires Storefront Builder

Directory site InfoSpace.com Monday acquired INEX Corp., a provider storefront building resources, in a stock deal worth about $37.5 million.

InfoSpace will exchange 900,000 shares of common stock for all of INEX's outstanding shares, warrants and options. The acquisition is expected to be completed in September.

INEX offers Internet commerce applications for merchants to build, manage and promote online storefronts, based on Microsoft technology. InfoSpace said the acquisition builds on the company's strategy to "enable e-commerce." Its ActiveShopper commerce service, made to search, research and buy a product online, was launched in May.

InfoSpace.com plans to re-launch INEX's ezStore storefront building tool as InfoSpace.com StoreBuilder. It is designed to enable non-technical users to create, publish and manage high-quality online stores. The product is also designed to allow advanced Web designers to design highly customized, scalable sites.

"We are seeing rapid growth in the online commerce area and we've had tremendous demand among businesses of all sizes to establish online stores and obtain distribution through our affiliate network," said Naveen Jain, chairman and CEO, InfoSpace.com.

"Now, we will be able to offer affiliates a way to attract e-tailers and local businesses to build, manage and promote online storefronts on their sites. In turn, we will integrate these online stores with our other services such as ActiveShopper, white pages, yellow pages and classifieds, giving our affiliates and local merchants the ability to be every place a buyer and seller can meet on the Web."