Kurt Peters , Executive Editor
Cleveland, OH and Redwood City, CA ---December 14, 2001 – American Greetings Corporation (NYSE: AM) and Tumbleweed Communications Corp. (NASDAQ: TMWD), a leading provider of secure content management solutions for enabling the business Internet, today announced a new licensing agreement. The agreement will enable AmericanGreetings.com, the online subsidiary of American Greetings, to license Tumbleweed’s patented personalized URL (PURL) technology for delivery of greeting cards over the Internet.
“As one of the world’s top websites, we offer the most creative selection in greeting cards available today on the Internet,” said Josef Mandelbaum, Chief Executive Officer of AmericanGreetings.com. “We’re pleased to enter into this agreement with Tumbleweed, the leading technology company for secure content management and online document delivery. At AmericanGreetings.com, we’ve always adopted cutting-edge technology so we can offer superior services to our customers and be the market leader in innovative creative expression online.”
”We are pleased to collaborate with leading companies, such as AmericanGreetings.com, that seek to offer the best technology features to their customers by licensing our technology or our patents,” said Jeff Smith, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Tumbleweed Communications Corp. “This is the second instance this year where we’ve successfully licensed our PURL patent, which allows online providers to uniquely bind content to a digital identity, enabling a host of applications such as online marketing and security content delivery. We will continue to further develop and enforce our patent portfolio as our research and development team continues to introduce innovative technology solutions.”
The licensing agreement covers AmericanGreetings.com offerings that provide for or facilitate document delivery over the Internet, and that include the provision for sending an e-mail delivery notification to the recipient with a URL unique to the recipient and the delivery. Pursuant to the licensing agreement, AmericanGreetings.com acknowledged the validity of the Tumbleweed U.S. Patent No. 6,192,407 for “Private, Trackable URLs for Directed Document Delivery” and U.S. Patent No. 5,790,790 for the “Electronic Document Delivery System in which Notification of Said Electronic Document is Sent to a Recipient Thereof.”
Top 10 Web Site
The electronic greetings channel has seen tremendous growth since its inception in 1996. As of November, 2001, the AmericanGreetings.com network of Internet sites was collectively ranked as the No. 10 property according to Nielsen//NetRatings. As a result of aggressive growth and acquisition strategies, traffic to the company’s Internet properties soared 107 percent in the past year, drawing more than 25 million unique visitors at home and at work in November. Through partnerships with AOL and MSN, AmericanGreetings.com (AOL Keyword: AG) and its affiliated online properties reached nearly 22 percent of all active Internet users last month. The AmericanGreetings.com family of web sites includes its flagship site www.americangreetings.com, as well as www.bluemountain.com, www.egreetings.com, www.beatgreets.com, and www.passitaround.com.
Tumbleweed Communications’ Patent Portfolio Tumbleweed’s patent portfolio includes 6 granted U.S. patents and 19 U.S. patent applications. In addition to those outlined above, granted patents include: Patent No. 6,061,448 "Method and System for Dynamic Server Document Encryption" granted May 9, 2000, Patent No. 6,119,137 “Distributed Dynamic Document Conversion Server” granted September 12, 2000 and Patent No. 6,151,675 “Method and Apparatus for Effecting Secure Document Format Data Conversion” granted November 21, 2000.
AmericanGreetings.com is the online greetings and personal expression subsidiary of American Greetings Corporation (NYSE: AM). In November 2001, the AmericanGreetings.com network of sites was one of the world’s top 10 Web properties with more than 25 million monthly unique visitors, according to Nielsen//NetRatings. Through partnerships with AOL and MSN, AmericanGreetings.com (AOL Keyword: AG) and its affiliates reached nearly 22 percent of all active Internet users last month. It offers the largest creative selection available on the Web. Along with its flagship site, AmericanGreetings.com operates BlueMountain.com, which is an online pioneer and one of the Internet’s most recognizable names, the Egreetings Network, which is the exclusive greetings provider for the Microsoft Network, Beat Greets, which features musical greetings from more than 250 artists, and the viral entertainment site PassItAround.com, which is one of the fastest growing properties on the Web.
About Tumbleweed Communications Corp.
Tumbleweed is a leading provider of solutions for managing secure communication and collaboration to enable the business Internet. Tumbleweed`s robust policy-based framework empowers organizations to safely share and protect critical information, increase customer loyalty and privacy and dramatically reduce costs. Tumbleweed is trusted by 1,000 blue-chip customers including American Express, JP Morgan Chase & Co., Chevron, Datek Online, the European Union`s Joint Research Council, US Food and Drug Administration, John Deere, Merrill Lynch, Nike, Northern Trust, NTT, Salomon Smith Barney, Travelers, United Parcel Service, and seven of the world`s largest postal services. Eight of the Fortune 10 and 100 of the Fortune 500 are Tumbleweed customers. Tumbleweed Communications was founded in 1993 and is headquartered in Redwood City, CA with offices around the world.
Except for the historical information contained herein, the matters discussed in this press release may constitute forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those projected, particularly with respect to Tumbleweed’s patent portfolio and its enforcement. In some cases, forward-looking statements can be identified by terminology such as "may," "will," "should," "potential," "continue," "expects," "anticipates," "intends," "plans," "believes," "estimates," and similar expressions. For further cautions about the risks of investing in Tumbleweed, we refer you to the documents Tumbleweed files from time to time with the Securities and Exchange Commission, particularly Tumbleweed`s Form 10-K filed March 30, 2001 and Form 10-Q filed November 13, 2001. Tumbleweed assumes no obligation to update information contained in this press release.