EC Direct™ To Incorporate PaymentNet™
Enterprise-Class Internet Payment Processing Services

Pleasanton, CA . - March 22, 1999 - the service leader in outsourced e-commerce payment processing, announced today that it has signed a agreement with EC Direct under which the Web e-commerce services company will incorporate Paymentnet’s enterprise-class payment processing services into its EconductorTM service offering.

EC Direct currently names NBC, Audio Highway, U.S. Robotics, Microsoft Press, and Gateway Computer among its announced customers.

According to David Mullan, EC Direct President and CEO, "We’ve been looking for a payment processing service provider that exploits the latest technologies to reliably process hundreds of thousands of transactions daily for our enterprise customers. PaymentNet’s scalability, service level, and customer care were the best we have seen. As outsource service providers ourselves, we appreciate what PaymentNet has achieved with its enterprise-class service. We’re glad to leverage PaymentNet’s expertise in payment processing, while remaining focused on our own core competency."

Bruce Hendrix, PaymentNet President and CEO, added, "EC Direct’s enterprise service architecture and customers are a perfect fit for the advanced capabilities of our service. Our goal is to make cash flow through the system a ‘solved problem’ for e-commerce enterprises."

"Enterprise Class; Easy For E-Merchants"

The PaymentNet Service represents a powerful alternative for businesses of all sizes who have been disappointed by slow, inefficient and costly payment processing solutions that have their architectural and feature origins in the "pioneering" era of Internet payment technologies.

The service runs directly over the Internet using an advanced database-oriented client/server architecture rather than employing the error-prone and enterprise-limited HTTP protocol as a transaction medium.

The server architecture is based on a highly scalable, multi-threaded design that can currently process over 2 million transactions per day at an average round-trip transaction time of roughly 3 seconds.

The PaymentNet service is deployed to business’ customer-facing applications via the company’s thin client, easily integrated, Commerce Service Interface (CSI) technology. The PaymentNet CSI currently comes pre-integrated into many leading e-commerce shopping carts and storefront environments.

PaymentNet’s SSL-based Secure Virtual Payment Network extends to the point of each business customers’ storefront application environment, creating a private WAN environment over the public Internet where new transaction services -- such as multiple payment instruments and other value-added services -- can be easily deployed to business customers.

About EC Direct

EC Direct™ is the first Web-centric ecommerce company enabling online merchants to "take the store to the customer." EC Direct's EConductor™ family of solutions serves as the ecommerce infrastructure for both Fortune 1000 companies and Internet-only brands. Through its modular architecture and outsourced service model, EConductor enables companies to build highly flexible and robust online businesses without incurring the costs and technological burdens that accompany in-house built ecommerce sites using packaged software tools. EC Direct is a privately held company headquartered in Seattle with sales offices in San Francisco, Chicago, and San Diego. For further information, visit the EC Direct Website at www.ecdirect.com.

About PaymentNet

PaymentNet, Inc. is an outsourced provider of automated, highly secure, Internet-based, real-time transaction processing services for merchants of all sizes and business approaches. PaymentNet is headquartered in Pleasanton, California, and can be found on the Web at www.paymentnet.com. Contact PaymentNet corporate offices at
925/225-1670.

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PaymentNet is a trademark of PaymentNet, Inc. All other trademarks are property of their respective owners.

PaymentNet Contact:
Scott Collison
PaymentNet, Inc.
(925) 598-1106
scollison@paymentnet.com?