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ROUNDBOOK PUBLISHING GROUP SIGNS $18 MILLION PACT TO DISTRIBUTE CD-ROMS THROUGH COMPTON'S NEWMEDIA RETAIL NETWORK

Seven-Month-Old Publisher To Release More Than 21 Titles In 18 Months
 SCOTTS VALLEY, Calif., Sept. 23 /PRNewswire/ -- RoundBook Publishing Group Inc., a consumer CD-ROM publisher, announced today it has signed an $18 million distribution agreement with Compton's NewMedia, the electronic publishing industry's leading retail distributor with 5,000 outlets in the United States and Canada.
 Under the agreement, Compton's will become sole domestic and European retail distributor for all of RoundBook's CD-ROM products. RoundBook will deliver more than 20 titles to Compton's over the next 18 months, making RoundBook -- which was founded only seven months ago -- one of the largest consumer CD-ROM publishers in the industry.
 The first five titles, from RoundBook's "Art of Russia Series" and "Computer Education Series," will be released for the 1993 holiday season at retail prices ranging from $49.95 to $79.95.
 Greg G. Smith, RoundBook's president, who valued the contract at $18 million, said: "We're delighted to join forces with the No. 1 distributor in the industry. With Compton's retail connections, we can be sure RoundBook's CD-ROM titles will be available to consumers throughout the U.S. and Europe."
 Norm Bastin, executive vice president and general manager of Compton's NewMedia, added, "RoundBook is publishing some of the most compelling and appealing CD-ROMs. We had to have them in our Affiliate program."
 Compton's NewMedia is a wholly owned subsidiary of Tribune Co. (NYSE: TRB) and is a leading provider of information, education and entertainment software in the CD-ROM industry.
 The first release, scheduled for late November, "The Art Treasures of Russia: A Comprehensive Survey," is also the most highly anticipated because many of the art works have not been seen by Westerners for almost 90 years. The disc shows artwork housed in Russian Museums including: tours of The Hermitage (17th Century Dutch Masters), The Kremlin Museum (applied art), and The Pushkin Museum (French impressionists); collected artwork of the Russian Realists from two of the most popular and famous national museums, The Russian Museum and The Tretyakov Gallery; and a Tour of The St. Basil Cathedral (The State Historical Museum).
 Vladimir Morozov, president and chief executive officer of Moscow's Laboratory of Optical Telemetry (LOT), an independent Russian electronic publisher that is co-developing the CD-ROMs with RoundBook, said a number of U.S. multimedia publishers were vying for the opportunity to publish the Russian art CD-ROMs. RoundBook was chosen, he said, because of the company's technical and marketing expertise in the CD-ROM industry.
 "The museum and publishing representatives with whom we work were impressed with RoundBook's experience and their respect for our national treasures," Morozov said. "For us, it was the chance to work side by side with people like ourselves -- young, aggressive and extremely qualified," he added.
 Additional Russian art discs in the series will be released in subsequent months, including: "The Pushkin: The Egyptians, the Impressionists and Picasso"; "The Kremlin: Art, Architecture and Diamonds"; "The Hermitage: The History of a Museum of Excellence"; and "The Russian Realists: Sculpture, Paintings and New Icons."
 With five titles scheduled release in November and another dozen being planned, RoundBook's "Computer Education Series" promises to be the most comprehensive in the CD-ROM industry. At its core are more than 80 computer books published by Prentice Hall Computer Publishing, a division of Paramount Publishing.
 The series will include titles that will appeal to consumers at all computer skill levels, from children to programmers. Titles for the first five are: "Comprehensive DOS 6.0," "Windows Programming Reference," "C/C++ Programming Reference," "Advanced C/C++ Programming Reference," and "The Hardware Bible."
 Smith co-founded RoundBook Publishing Group on March 1, 1993, with Francis Juliano, a long-time colleague. They have more than 12 years CD-ROM and multimedia industry experience gained while working at Sony Electronic Publishing and Meridian Data Inc.
 RoundBook's discs can be used with the leading CD-ROM platforms including Microsoft Windows(TM), Apple MacIntosh, Sony MMCD(TM) and Data Discman electronic books. In addition, the company soon will begin developing game applications for the Sega CD, Nintendo and 3DO platforms in the coming months.
 RoundBook Publishing is located at 5 Erba Lane, Suite D, Scotts Valley, CA 95066. Telephone: 408-438-4222; fax: 408-438-5888.
 -0- 9/23/93
 /CONTACT: Kim Freeman, RoundBook Publishing Group, 212-254-3794/


CO: RoundBook Publishing Group Inc. ST: California IN: CPR SU:

LM-LS -- LA006 -- 5041 09/23/93 08:31 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Sep 23, 1993
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