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Excite@Home Invests More Than $45 Million to Broaden Web Content

Looking to diversify its narrow and broadband Web content, Excite@Home Tuesday invested more than $45 million in six different Web-based companies.

Through an investment with Rosenbluth International, Excite@Home plans to enhance its interactive travel content with the newly-formed affiliate Rosenbluth Interactive and Biztravel.com.

Other investments in E-Stamp, General Magic, Quokka Sports, WebMD and Webstakes.com further diversify Excite@Home's opportunities to grow the company through enhanced web content offerings.

George Bell, Excite@Home (ATHM) president, said merging Excite with @Home has provided the company with the cash to broaden both portals.

"The new cash and balance sheets of the merged company, Excite@Home, allow us to explore and invest in new services for our Network. We find this an attractive way to grow and will continue this strategy," Bell said.

Bell added that Excite@Home is not trying to be all things to all people, but does need to offer competitive services by broadening their interactive web content.

"The Internet presents too many opportunities for any one company to conquer. Therefore, we are investing in key areas that we see as winners in the next round of the Internet," Bell said.

Mark Stevens, Excite@Home executive vice-president of corporate and business development, said the company plans to build on its strategy of partnering by investment.

"Excite was built on a model of investing deeply in our partnerships and we remain committed to investing in winners," Stevens said.

"We are now in a position to assist our smaller partners financially as they build out important new categories online. We will share the success of our partners, but most importantly we will reinforce our commitment to the relationships," Stevens added.

In addition to the Rosenbluth International deal, Excite@Home has invested $2.5 million in E-Stamp.com, $5 million in Quokka Sports, $6 million in General Magic, $25 million in WebMD, and $7 million in Webstakes.com.