Internet Consulting Franchiser Netspace Awards First International Master Franchise In The United Kingdom

MIAMI | Monday, January 20, 2003

As part of its plan to extend its international operations, Netspace(R), the only U.S.-based Internet business consulting franchiser, has signed its first master franchise agreement with Oxford, England-based Shaun Thomson, a marketing expert with 20 years of success in sales and business development in the international computer and communications industries, announced Netspace(R) founder and president Elliot Krasnow. Netspace(R) recently awarded its 51st franchise in the U.S. and is planning a public offering, added Krasnow. UK Netspace(R) has already awarded its first franchise in Wellingborough, Northampton and is looking to have 50 franchisees within two years, said Thomson. "The United Kingdom is a key market for Netspace(R)'s international expansion," said Krasnow. "We believe our franchise model, which is experiencing fast and sustained profitable growth in the U.S., is the first of its type in the UK. We are very excited at its prospects and are looking for potential franchisees in all parts of the country." Established in 1996, Netspace(R) started franchising its business system in June 2000. It has 51 franchisees in 25 states, including Florida, Georgia, New York, Missouri, Minnesota, Texas, Michigan and Washington, D.C. Franchisees include former Fortune 1000 executives, computer and IT experts, professionals, and sales and marketing consultants. Netspace(R) is focused on helping small and medium businesses grow by providing innovative Internet business solutions, including proprietary e-marketing and search engine placement programs. Through locally appointed franchisees, who become the Netspace(R) Internet consultant to the client, Netspace(R) offers the services of a multi-disciplinary team of experienced webmasters and business development experts. The former create websites and the firm's proprietary marketing technology; the latter offer strategic marketing advice on the integration of Internet-based promotional strategies with existing on-line and off-line marketing activities. Part of the franchise support package includes a range of proprietary Internet solutions developed by Netspace(R). This includes website development, hosting and on-line promotion; search engine submission software; e-publishing; and e-commerce strategies. Netspace(R) marketing directors help franchisees build their business through phone and e-mail support, virtual meetings and visits to the franchisee's location. "Each franchisee has a sales coach who focuses on developing his sales skills," said Krasnow, a nationally recognized sales trainer and former head of a Sandler Sales Institute franchise, named the leading sales training company by Entrepreneur Magazine in 2001. The son of an investment banker, Krasnow has also headed several of his own companies involved with the retail marketing of financial services and tangible assets. Krasnow and Thomson believe that the Netspace(R) business concept is ideal for enabling small and mid-sized businesses in the United Kingdom to fully exploit the benefits of the Internet -- as their counterparts have in the U.S. "Netspace(R) franchisees provide the bridge that allows time-strapped, cashflow-conscious business owners and managers to gain access to some of the most advanced and innovative Internet business solutions available," said Thomson. "Because franchisees work locally, face-to-face with their customers, they are able to gain a real understanding of how the client's business works. This ensures that the customer gets the solution that is most appropriate for their business. Moreover, because most solutions are based on a monthly fee rather than a large, upfront, one-time payment, the program can accommodate a small company's cashflow constraints." Prior to setting up Netspace(R) UK, Shaun Thomson was a business development director covering Europe, the Middle East and Africa for Avaya, a major U.S. communications company. He has worked with companies including HP, Microsoft, IBM, Apple, EDS and Lucent Technologies, helping them sell consultancy and products to major corporations around the world. Thomson also spent five years running his own Computer Aided Design firm and six years as a chartered civil engineer working in Africa and the Far East.

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