Internet Market Close Report for 1998.08.20



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  • Barnes & Noble (NYSE:BKS) plans on spinning off its Web division,, selling about 20% of the unit to the public. The motivation is clear: rival (NASDAQ:AMZN) market value at north of $6.7 billion (including debt) is well over twice Barnes & Noble. And the inflow of capital could help BKS Web site grow. Fans on H&R Block’s (NYSE:HRB) 20% spinoff of CompuServe take note: 20% may not be enough to get Wall Street excited. Look for our in-depth report on AMZN vs. BKS and what this possible IPO valuation could be in tomorrow’s Internet Stock Report.

  • USWeb (NASDAQ:USWB) agrees to acquire Metrix Communications which makes workflow and collaboration software based on the Lotus Notes/Domino platform. Terms undisclosed. We believe USWeb is doing the “embrace and extend” approach to the Internet professional services market. Outsourcing Web services may be very commonplace for the millions of businesses that want Web presence without having to hire a Web team. Businesses use phones but don’t have phone gurus on the payroll, do they? USWeb acquiring a Lotus-centric firm to us looks like a reach for an installed base it can leverage into a broader Internet service base.

  • (NASDAQ:AMZN) $530 million 10% senior discount notes due 2008 gets a single-‘B’ rating as did the company itself.

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