, a European Start-Up Launches Free Personal Domain Names; Aims to Become Leading Personalized Web Service

Feb 04, 2000, 00:00 ET from

    OSLO, Norway, Feb. 4 /PRNewswire/ -- The first company world wide,
 European start-up now offers free personal email addresses of
 the type  The company has the world's largest
 selection of domain names, and its service is due to launch in the US and 10
 European countries within the coming weeks.
     "Hotmail was the first company world-wide to offer free email.  We have
 lifted the service to a new level.  Why settle for when
 you can have John@Riggs.Net?" says CEO and co-founder of, Lars-
 Odin Mellemseter.  "Our unique service enables us to challenge leading players
 like Yahoo and Hotmail right off the bat."
     In addition to offering easy-to-remember email addresses and home page
 URLs, facilitates the sharing of valuable Internet real estate.
 "Through our service people can share domain names with their family and other
 people with the same last name." says CEO Mellemseter.
     "Our service provides a fix to the problem that one person prevents others
 from using a common last name as a domain name. We are proud to be the first
 company world wide to offer free personal email addresses, and we believe this
 will revolutionize the global web mail market," says co-founder and CTO Geir
     "Robin Hood"
     What does is the opposite of cybersquatting.  "While
 cybersquatters profit from the idea that only one company can use an Internet
 address, we let as many people as possible share each domain.  Also, while
 domain pirates sell domains to the highest bidder, we give the addresses away
 for free. We are the Robin Hood of the Internet," says Rasmussen.
     Largest selection offers the largest selection of personal domains in the
 world, and has registered enough last name domains to cover 1 billion people.
 This is possible because millions of people worldwide have common names such
 as Smith, Brown and Williams. has by far registered more domain names than any other
 player.  Its offering contains all the most common US family names as well as
 the most common surnames in many other countries.
     The service
 The aim of the company is to offer a wide range of services complimenting the
 name-based addresses. will soon offer individual, customized
 services such as online bookmarks, calendar services and online hard drive.
     At users can presently sign up for free webmail with a
 personal address book and support for personal folder management.  In addition
 to the basic webmail service, also offers free automatic
 forwarding to users' other email accounts.  "Many of our competitors do not
 allow this, but we try to be more open and user friendly," says CTO Rasmussen.
     Users will soon also be able to establish personal home pages at addresses
 based on their own names, such as or  The company will offer both free web redirection and
 free hosting of web pages.
     The service is presently available in Norwegian and English, and will be
 launched in additional languages over the next few weeks. The first countries
 in which the service will launch are USA, Norway, UK, Sweden, Finland,
 Denmark, Germany, Spain, the Netherlands and France.
     About was founded July 1999 in Oslo, Norway.  Two Scandinavian
 venture capital firms, Four Seasons Venture and Venture Partners, fund the
 company.  The Board of Directors consists of Tim Jackson, founder and former
 CEO of leading European auction site (Nasdaq:   QXLC) as well as
 Alexander Arnesen, Norwegian CEO of European web consultancy Icon Medialab,
 Karl Christian Agerup of Venture Partners, Lars Thoresen of Four Seasons
 Venture, and CEO Lars-Odin Mellemseter.