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Webvan.com Adds Books to Product Offerings

Webvan Group Inc. Tuesday began offering books on its Web site, including hard- and soft-cover best-sellers, kid's, local interest, cookbooks and recommended reading selections.

Books are the latest addition to Webvan's (WBVN) "Specialty Shop" section which offers a host of domestic products, including fresh flowers, home and office supplies, games, home decor, and U.S. postage stamps.

"We are aggressively expanding our product offering beyond groceries to give our customers a breadth and depth of choices when they shop with Webvan," said George T. Shaheen, president and chief executive officer of Webvan Group Inc. "As we listen to our customers, we continue to offer them value-added products and services that save them money and time. Augmenting our existing business model with a selection of books that can be easily expanded is an important step in Webvan's last mile's strategy."

Webvan Group Inc., which went public last year, has kicked off an accelerated roll-out schedule to build a national presence. The company will launch its services in the greater Atlanta area in the second quarter of this year and plans to be in 15 markets by the end of 2001.

The company created a new method for e-tailing by merging e-commerce with a personalized courier service that delivers products into customers' homes within a 30-minute window of their choosing.