Corporate Liaisons: EBIZ Acquires JBSI. Highground Now Brocade Fabric Access Partner. Maxoptix Buys Breece Hill Tech.

January 12, 2001

SHORT TAKES

EBIZ ENTERPRISES COMPLETES ACQUISITION OF JBSI

Scottsdale, AZ — EBIZ Enterprises Inc., the country’s largest vendor-neutral Linux solutions builder, announced the completion of the JBSi (Jones Business Systems Inc.) acquisition announced in mid-November. Houston-based JBSi is now a wholly owned subsidiary of EBIZ Enterprises Inc. Under terms of the acquisition, 8.3 million shares of EBIZ stock will be exchanged for all outstanding capital stock and equity interests of JBSi. “The acquisition significantly expands and fortifies EBIZ’s leadership in the Linux industry with combined annual revenue approaching $50 million,” said EBIZ Chief Executive Officer Dave Shaw. “The new company will greatly enhance the movement of the UNIX VARs (value added resellers) and users to the Linux Operating System. JBSi’s state of the art facility and infrastructure ensures that EBIZ will maintain the rapid growth of specialized servers.

The acquisition strengthens EBIZ’s commitment to the expanding market for specialized servers, also known as appliance servers. Specialized servers are a new generation of single-purpose computer equipment created as a result of rapid Internet growth and the evolution to a thin client architecture. Specialized servers, including Web-hosting and database-hosting devices, are used extensively by application service providers (ASPs) and Internet Service Providers (ISPs). EBIZ shares this space with companies such as Cobalt (Nasdaq: CBLT), Network Engines (Nasdaq: NENG) and Network Appliance (Nasdaq: NTAP).

HIGHGROUND SIGNS AS BROCADE FABRIC ACCESS PARTNER

San Jose, CA and Marlborough, MA — Brocade Communications Systems, Inc., the leading provider of Storage Area Networking infrastructure, and HighGround(R) Systems, the leading developer of storage resource management software, announced today that the two companies are expanding their partnership to deliver enhanced storage resource management solutions for Brocade-based Storage Area Networks (SANs). HighGround is now utilizing the Brocade application programming interface (API) to achieve a more sophisticated level of interoperability with the Brocade SilkWorm(R) infrastructure. As a result, SAN customers will have the ability to use HighGround’s Storage Resource Manager(TM) (SRM(TM)) solutions to proactively manage Brocade-based heterogeneous SANs. Management capabilities will include real-time “layered views” of the SAN topography, in which all devices in a SAN are analyzed through dynamic discovery, as well as application-level management of storage devices to optimize resource utilization.

Brocade SilkWorm Fibre Channel fabric switches provide the world’s leading networking foundation for SANs. Using Brocade SilkWorm switches, customers can connect servers with storage devices through a SAN, creating a highly reliable and scalable environment for storage applications. Brocade switches are based on the Brocade Fabric OS(TM), which is an intelligent distributed operating system for Brocade-based SANs. The Fabric OS provides a feature-rich platform for SAN-designed applications and offers advanced features for proactive SAN management and monitoring, enabling applications to dynamically discover physical components in a SAN and monitor SAN fabric resources. Brocade makes the value-added features of the Fabric OS available to its key partners through Fabric Access(TM), the application programming interface (API) to Fabric OS.

MAXOPTIX ACQUIRES BREECE HILL TECHNOLOGIES

Fremont, CA — Maxoptix Corp., a technology leader in secondary storage, announced that it has purchased the business and assets of Breece Hill Technologies located in Boulder, Colo. Breece Hill is an established supplier of entry-level through enterprise-class automated tape loaders and libraries with an installed base of more than 14,000 libraries. Financial terms of the agreements were not disclosed.

In making the announcement, Maxoptix president and CEO Gary Potts noted a number of strategic benefits that led Maxoptix to make the acquisition at this time. “With the addition of the Breece Hill business and human resources, we have made a major move into the network storage market. “We see a tremendous opportunity in launching automated solutions supporting our new industry-leading Optical Super Density (OSD(TM)) removable drives and media. The Breece Hill product platform will enable us to create a unique removable storage solutions product line featuring rapid data availability, high data transfer rates for streaming digital content, outstanding reliability and 30-year shelf life of archived data on removable media,” stated Potts.

Maxoptix is committed to providing “best of breed” tape and optical products. Its expanded product line provides customers with an unbeatable breadth of choice and upgrade path in tape libraries and loaders. It will now be possible for customers to smoothly migrate from tape-based storage solutions to high-reliability OSD-based automation as their business needs dictate, all from a single vendor. First generation OSD drives and media will offer up to 20 GB capacity per cartridge and will have the potential to make immediate inroads in applications such as digital media streaming and data capture as well as traditional backup and archival storage applications.

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