Release Contact:
Kristen McEntire
Margit Wennmachers
OutCast Communications
415/392-8282 Unveils Bold, New Free Model For Photos

Site to offer effortless developing, online sharing and storing for film-based and digital camera users

SAN FRANCISCO - January 17, 2000 -, the first and only end-to-end online photo site today unveiled its bold, new business model that could fundamentally change the $14.20 billion U.S. consumer photo industry. will offer consumers effortless photo developing, printing, digitizing and sharing -- all for free. While other photo sites prepare to battle over the digital-only market, will meet consumers where they are today (95 percent still use film cameras) and enable them to enjoy the benefits of online sharing and offline prints for free.

"Most people want to enjoy digital benefits like sharing photos online, but they find digital cameras too expensive and a bit intimidating", explained co-founder and CEO Raj Kapoor. "Our message to consumers is simple: Use your favorite camera, whether it's a point-and-shoot, a disposable or a digital. We'll make sharing and storing online a snap, and we'll give you prints and negatives from your film-based camera for free. We're the one-stop-shop for all your photo needs, servicing both digital and film cameras."

According to Gibboney Huske of Credit Suisse First Boston, a digital-only online strategy misses a major market opportunity. "As less than four percent of U.S. households currently own a digital camera, we believe it is important for online photo companies to address the huge market of film-based cameras (or users). We estimate that film volumes will grow four percent worldwide through 2010 despite strong growth in digital cameras," Huske said. "And, while that number is growing rapidly, film-based camera use will remain in the 90-plus percent range for years to come -- even as people begin adopting digital."

" will bridge that gap and help consumers migrate to digital cameras," said Kapoor. To make the complex back-end operations a reality, has developed a unique "click-and-mortar" partnership with District Photo -- the largest mail order photo processing house in the country. District Photo, an equity investor in the company, gives a leading edge with its unique capacity to handle and process virtually limitless rolls of film. District Photo is committed to providing customers with the highest quality photo processing and digitizing, delivered in a seamless and timely manner.

The process is fairly simple and direct. Consumers simply register online, and then they can either receive a special film mailer from Snapfish or print postage-paid labels directly from the site. The consumer places a roll of film (or even a single use camera) in the envelope and drops it in the mail. A few days later, e-mails the consumer to say that their free pictures are posted online. The consumer then logs on to to view pictures online. Once online, they also can order optional reprints, enlargements or photo gifts, such as mugs or T-shirts. And, by clicking just one button, the consumer can effortlessly share pictures with friends and family. The consumer then receives their free set of prints and negatives in the mail, paying only for the cost of shipping and handling.

"We expect our primary source of revenue will be from photo-related e-commerce", Kapoor said. will offer a broad array of photo-related products, from photo mugs and T-shirts to enlargements and digital cameras.

The site also will contain targeted, contextual advertising related to the interests of each consumer. will not sell information about consumers without their consent.

About is positioned to dramatically redefine the consumer photography market by providing the first complete photo service that offers film developing, printing, storing and sharing online, all for free. will provide both film-based and digital camera users with the ability to seamlessly and effortlessly share, store and order reprints with unsurpassed security.

Privately held and backed by @Ventures, the affiliated venture capital arm of CMGI, Mayfield Fund and private investors, is headed up by a management team of seasoned, second-generation Internet leaders from Excite@Home and Cisco Systems.

With consumer photography representing a $14.20 billion market in the US alone, is poised to provide consumers with breakthrough benefits in online photography and reinvent an enormous consumer category in the process. The company is based in San Francisco, California.
Additional information is available at the company's Web site at

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