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Vector Development, a Warburg Pincus and AEA-backed Accelerator, Announces $4.25 Million First-round Investment in OpenShelf.com.

Business & Technology Editors

WASHINGTON--(BUSINESS WIRE)--April 26, 2000

OpenShelf.com grabs first-mover status in the B2B home improvement

and hardware category

Top execs from AOL, Andersen Consulting,

Hechingers, Cisco, pcOrder.com and NetGravity behind venture

Vector Development CEO Bob Smith, founder of AOL's Digital City Inc., the leading network of city guides on the Internet, announced today that his Internet accelerator, Vector Development LLC, will make its first investment in OpenShelf.com, the leading B2B player in the home improvement and hardware products category.

Under terms of the deal, Vector--which is backed by a prestigious network of blue-chip investors including Warburg Pincus Ventures and New York-based fund AEA Investors Inc.--will invest $4.25 million in OpenShelf.com, with Red Rock Ventures, a Silicon Valley venture firm, investing another $2.25 million.

"We believe OpenShelf represents the leading edge of a new generation of start-ups, namely companies that make existing, real-world business processes more efficient using the Internet," says Smith. "That, in essence, is what OpenShelf is doing in the home improvement and hardware category."

OpenShelf.com, which is based in San Francisco, will aggregate product information from manufacturers across the home improvement and hardware category. In doing so, it will make it easier for large suppliers such as Black & Decker, as well as smaller ones such as Dripless, to get up-to-date product feature and pricing information in front of their target audience, namely retailer purchasers. At the same time it will allow large retail purchasers such as Wal-Mart and Home Depot, and smaller ones such as Mom & Pop's Hardware Store, to get better access to a broader array of products and easy access to product feature and pricing information. "OpenShelf is all about streamlining the supply-chain and information flow between the manufacturer and retailer in what is a $200bn plus transactional industry in the United States alone," says OpenShelf CEO Andrew D. Ive, who most recently co-founded X-IT Products, named by Inc. Magazine in June 1999 as one of the nation's hottest start-ups. "Today that process is cumbersome at best, wasting a considerable amount of money which ultimately gets taken out of the bottom line for both Manufacturers and Retailers."

Ive, 32, and his co-founder, Daniel J. Moore, 35, a former executive at Andersen Consulting, have assembled an all-star team of advisors and backers including:

-- Kenneth Cort, former CEO and President of Hechingers

Department Stores, former COO of Ames Department Stores and a

former General Manager at Sears & Roebuck

-- Clayton Reed, currently a top sales exec with Cisco

-- Andrew Palmer, a former top exec with pcOrder.com and

currently at BowStreet

-- Tom Shields, the co-founder and former Chief Technology

Officer of NetGravity

-- Patrick Jones, the CEO & CFO of GemPlus, former Director of

Finance at Intel

-- Bob Smith, founder of AOL Digital City Inc. and now Chairman

and CEO of Vector Development, an Internet accelerator

-- Gail Foster, former head of business and product development

for AOL HomePages and AOL Instant Messenger

-- Jim Smith, former associate partner at Andersen Consulting

-- Ed Hauck, former group publisher, at Phillips

-- Mark Lewyn, former TicketMaster-CitySearch exec and co-founder

of ezgov.com

-- Rick Wilhelm, former exec at Andersen Consulting

-- Ellen Kirsh, former general counsel at AOL
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Publication:Business Wire
Date:Apr 26, 2000
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