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Idealab: Intranets Aren't Just for Corporations Anymore

The latest venture of Bill Gross' Idealab aims to expand intranet usage beyond corporate America to small and medium-sized businesses.

In addition to standard intranet features, the service offers free Web hosting and limited availability of customized URLs on the larger Intranets.com site.

"The demand for intranets by smaller businesses is skyrocketing and there is substantial pent-up demand by businesses that don't know how to build them," said Steve Crummey, CEO of Intranets.com. "In just the few weeks before launch, 5,000 businesses subscribed, representing nearly 250,000 members."

"Now that any company's communications can be enhanced with free intranets, we project that more than 1,000,000 new community members will be using Intranets.com by September."

Intranets.com will also allow businesses and individuals to create private areas that include address books, calendar functions, a group document database, announcements and news.

Intranets.com's hosting services include 25 megabytes of space, site back-up, and continuous access. Intranets.com also offers technical support.

Like most companies on the Internet, Intranets.com will make money by selling advertising. A strip of ads will run along the right side of the screen. The company will also receive commissions from e-commerce transactions.