SAN FRANCISCO, Sept. 13 /PRNewswire/ -- BioSpace.com, the global hubsite for the life sciences industry, and the National Institutes of Health (NIH) today announced that their jointly developed online marketplace has received Vice President Al Gore's Hammer Award. The Hammer Award is one of three government awards recently presented to the "IntraMall," the e-commerce platform jointly developed by the two organizations. Among the other awards recognizing BioSpace.com and the NIH are the E-Gov 2000 Trail Blazer Award, and the Center of Excellence in Information Technology's Best Practices Award for Innovative E-Commerce Solution. All awards are given in recognition of exceptional solutions designed to improve operations within government agencies. "We've worked with BioSpace.com to create a platform designed for tomorrow, not for yesterday," said MaryAnn Guerra, Deputy Director for Management of the National Cancer Institute and NIH leader of the project. "We're extremely pleased that both our organizations' efforts in bringing state-of-the-art technology to the NIH have been recognized by the Vice President's program." "The functionality and growing scope of our co-developed online marketplace has made it one of the industry's leading e-commerce platforms," said Scott Clarke, CEO of BioSpace.com. "Recognition by these awards supports our conviction that this customized portal will benefit the NIH through increased efficiency, greater productivity and subsequent savings." BioSpace.com is one of the Internet's most comprehensive resource and service providers for the life sciences, delivering a host of content and information services through its global hubsite. The company also offers customized business-to-business (B2B) e-commerce solutions by designing portals that integrate its hubsite services with an end-to-end online marketplace. BioSpace.com's B2B marketplace currently has over 100 key life sciences suppliers offering more than 1 million products. The IntraMall is the business-to-government version of BioSpace.com's B2B platform, customized for use by the 18 institutes and six centers that comprise the NIH and make it the world's largest purchaser of life sciences supplies. The IntraMall is designed to positively impact the agency's supplies expenditures by streamlining the procurement process, significantly lowering cost per transaction and providing a more competitive pricing environment. "The efficiencies inherent in online procurement can benefit government agencies like ours, as well as academic institutions and commercial organizations," said Ms. Guerra. "Our relationship in developing this platform represents an outstanding example of successful partnering between government and industry." BioSpace.com became the NIH's partner in ongoing development of the IntraMall in December 1999, when it took over the project and was awarded an extended Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA) by the organization. Since then, the company has overseen a dramatic growth surge in the marketplace, including a significant increase in the number of participating suppliers and a ten-fold surge in the number of available products. Under the CRADA, BioSpace.com is further commercializing the platform and continuing to attract new participants. "We realized when we partnered with BioSpace.com that we were getting the advantages of bringing on board an Internet company truly unique in its level of scientific and informatics experience," said Ms. Guerra. "Through a history of service and community-building efforts, BioSpace.com has amassed a tremendous understanding of the culture and the behaviors of the life sciences industry. Their existing portal, including the content and services they provide, and their large and loyal online audience have been tremendous value-adds to our relationship." BioSpace.com is the most heavily trafficked site in the life sciences industry. Last week the company released usage figures revealing dramatic growth in the company's community of users. The number of unique users visiting BioSpace.com has grown more than 200% this year and reached more than 600,000 in July, recording more than 2.2 million page views. "As quantified by these figures, there is a notable willingness in the life sciences community to turn to the Internet as a resource for both information and services," said Mr. Clarke. "BioSpace.com is dedicated to bringing crucial services onto the Internet where applicable and beneficial to industry progress." About BioSpace.com BioSpace.com (http://www.biospace.com) is the global hubsite for the life sciences industry, providing a vertical portal for information, product and services. BioSpace.com attracts over 2.2 million page views per month from over 600,000 unique visitors seeking news & information, business and scientific content, investment data, company profiles, job postings, real-estate listings, and event listings. Additionally, the company delivers customized e-commerce portal solutions for the industry, combining a procurement platform with the information services delivered through its global hubsite. Its innovative business-to-business (B2B) supply solution was developed and piloted cooperatively with the National Institutes of Health (NIH). The company is dedicated to accelerating discovery in the life sciences by facilitating exchange crucial to the industry through the application of Internet technology.