Excite launches local portal site

Excite Asia Pacific has finally announced its arrival in the local portal market, with the launch yesterday of its Excite Australia Web site -- www.excite.com.au.

Taking on Internet portal heavyweight Yahoo!, the Excite Australia Web site offers users search engine abilities as well as personalised news, entertainment and information.

Content including stock information, current affairs and IT news is being provided by Equity World, AAP and ZDNet respectively, and the site has strong advertising and sponsorship backing from 12 charter sponsors, said Rick Redding, Excite Inc's vice president of international business and operations.

Other local content providers include Seek, iMovie and Sofcom; and charter sponsors include Intel, FAI, OzEmail, ANZ, Travel.com.au, Optus Internet and Fairfax Online.

According to Tim Burgess, Excite Asia Pacific vice president, key to the site's success will be its personalisation.

"We're a content aggregator not a content provider, " Burgess said.

The company also suggested its specially developed search engine, which combines the functionalities of a directory service and search engine and features some 800,000 Australian Web sites, will attract users.

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