Inktomi (Nasdaq: INKT), which makes scalable Internet software that powers search engines and e-commerce sites, announced a major expansion of its online shopping presence on Friday. The company said that the Inktomi Shopping Engine’s coverage will now include five new portal and destination sites, more than 350 merchants and more than two million products.
The shopping engine is a platform that allows consumers to research products, compare prices and make purchases all in one place.
New Partners Include Big Names
The Inktomi Shopping Engine now has deals with 20 portal and destination sites. New partners include:
FreeSeervers, FreeYellow.com, Global DataTel, NetGift Registry and Time Inc. New Media. This is in addition to existing partners including the Go Network, CNET, Snap and CNNfn.
Merchants that have signed up include big names like barnesandnoble.com, Beyond.com, CyberShop, Egghead.com, Outpost.com and Reel.com.
About the Shopping Engine
In addition to product and price comparisons, the shopping engine includes expert content and recommendations from sources such as Consumers Digest. Another advantage for consumers is universal order processing, which means that transactions are streamlined and that shoppers only have to enter their information once, rather than at each individual store.
Shares of Inktomi were rising fast in early trading today, up 8-3/8 to 113. The stock is at a new high after anticipation about the expansion of the shopping engine helped it climb this week. The company is expected to announce earnings on April 15.
While the shopping engine news won’t add to this quarter’s earnings, Inktomi believes that online shopping could eventually be its main source of revenue. Along with its portal-site partners, Inktomi will earn commissions on each sale made through the shopping engine.
In related news, Inktomi signed a deal with Osage Systems Group on Wednesday that gives gives Osage expanded authorization to distribute Inktomi’s Traffic Server, a high-performance network caching software.
“This new agreement will give us the opportunity to aggressively pursue Traffic Server opportunities in California, Arizona, Texas, Minnesota, Florida, and New York, in addition to the Washington D.C. and Chicago markets,” said Jack Leadbeater, chairman and CEO of Osage.