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Kelly's i: Keeping you up to speed on the net: NET NEWS.

Byline: with MATT KELLY

CONGRATULATIONSS to Graphico New Media, the website design agency.

"We've won three prestigious awards at two ceremonies," they boasted yesterday. What the press release forgot to mention was that the only reason they won Best Web Design Agency 2001 award from the UK Future Internet Awards is because the original winners, Deepend, had gone bust. What a smashing omen for the future.

THE British arm of Excite has been left stranded after the US parent company Excite@home went bust. The future of Excite.co.uk, the one-time darling of the dotcom era, now hangs in the balance although MD Rebecca Miskin remains bullish that a buyer for Excite@home's 58 per cent stake can be found. Her optimism echoes that of many other dotcom bosses we've seen fail - she has less than a month to find a buyer and still thinks there's hope, even though it's been on the market for five months.

As a glorified search engine, Excite.co.uk has little value because of the black hole in advertising revenue and fierce competition from the likes of Yahoo, AOL, Freeserve, Google and Lycos. And last time we looked there were no portal buyers around. The words "flogging" and "dead horse" spring to mind.

THANKS to research company NetValue for pointing out the obvious - Britain has one of the poorest broadband markets in Europe. Of the eight countries it included in the survey, the UK came out seventh, just ahead of Italy.
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:The Mirror (London, England)
Date:Oct 2, 2001
Words:248
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