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  • 12 August 2003 09:48

Overture Expands to Australia with Establishment of Sydney Office

SYDNEY––August 12, 2003––Overture Services Inc., (Nasdaq: OVER), a global leader in commercial search services on the Internet, announced today that it has established an Australian office and that it will launch its successful paid placement search service in Australia by the end of this year. The paid search market in Australia is projected to grow at an annual compounded rate of 86 per cent to approximately A$63.8 million (or approximately US$41 million) by 2005, according to a 2002 Jupiter Research report.

Overture has established a wholly owned subsidiary, Overture Services Australia Pty. Limited, which is headed by Managing Director, Ms Mel Bohse, the former Vice President of AltaVista Asia Pacific, and staffed by the former employees of the Australian operation of AltaVista Company, whose business Overture acquired during the first half of 2003.

"Overture is well-positioned for success in the Australian market thanks to its established and experienced search marketing team already on the ground," said Brian Steel, President, Overture International. "We are confident that the superior quality and value Overture provides its affiliates and 95,000 advertisers in the US, Europe and Asia will be received equally well in Australia."

Ms Bohse brings 20 years of experience in establishing, managing and building sales and marketing departments in companies in Australia's IT&T and Internet industries, including Media Tech Pacific, Attachmate and Anixter. Her reputation as a start-up expert led to roles as Asia Pacific Vice President with international technology companies such as Engage Media and later, AltaVista, where she oversaw the establishment and growth of their organisations in the Australian, New Zealand, Indian and Korean markets.

"Overture will offer powerful new ways for Australian businesses and consumers to connect on the Internet," said Ms Bohse. "The company’s pioneering search products and services will make marketing dramatically more effective for businesses and highly valued by consumers.”

Overture is well advanced in its integration of AltaVista and the Web search business of FAST Search and Transfer, which Overture also acquired in the first half of 2003. The company is on track to combine its acquired Web search products into an integrated world-class Web search platform by the end of this year.

About Overture Overture is a global leader in commercial search services on the Internet, providing new and more powerful ways for businesses to connect with customers online. Overture pioneered commercial search by aligning the interests of consumers; its 95,000 active, paying advertisers; and its distribution partners, including Yahoo!, MSN and CNN. The company offers a full suite of Internet search products and related services for syndication to advertisers and distribution partners worldwide. Additionally, Overture operates the and sites.

Through its core paid placement commercial search product, Overture operates a real-time marketplace where its advertisers can bid for placement in search results that Overture distributes to affiliate partners, which includes many of the most popular destinations on the Web. An advertiser only pays Overture when a user clicks on their listing.

Overture’s Web-based marketplace provides consumers quality search results; supplies advertisers with a cost-effective medium to drive targeted leads to their Web sites; and offers its distribution network a meaningful, revenue-generating search capability. Through its core paid placement search product, Overture facilitated 646 million paid introductions between consumers and its advertisers in the second quarter of 2003, building on the 2.2 billion paid introductions achieved in 2002. Founded in 1997, Overture is based in Pasadena, Calif., with U.S. offices in New York, Chicago, San Francisco, and Palo Alto, Calif. The headquarters for Overture's non-U.S. business is in Ireland, with offices in the United Kingdom, Germany, France, Italy, Norway, Japan, South Korea and Australia. In addition, Overture has previously announced plans to launch in Spain, the Netherlands, Austria, Switzerland and Scandinavia by the end of the year. The company employs more than 1,300 people worldwide.

On July 14, 2003, Yahoo! and Overture signed a definitive agreement for Yahoo! to acquire Overture subject to certain conditions. For more information about Overture, visit

This press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of the federal securities laws. These forward-looking statements include, without limitation, statements that potential Web site partners (in the U.S. and internationally), their users will want to use Overture search results, that advertisers and businesses in these markets will want to participate in Overture's search results by seeking enhanced placement in the search results and that its integration of AltaVista and the Web search business of FAST Search and Transfer will be accomplished by the end of this year. These forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results and events to differ materially from those described in the forward-looking statements. These risks and uncertainties include, among others, that Overture's products and technologies may not successfully work with those of Overture's distribution affiliates or other third parties in the Australian market, the launch of Overture in Australia may not happen in a timely manner or may not happen at all, the implementation may not be successful or generate revenue for Overture or yield economic benefits to Overture or our Australian distribution affiliates, the risk that Overture's advertisers and businesses may not want traffic from Overture's Australian distribution affiliates, or users may not click on Overture's search results and that its integration of AltaVista and the Web search business of FAST Search and Transfer will be accomplished by the end of this year. For a discussion of other risks that could cause actual results or events to differ materially from such forward-looking statements, see the discussion of "Risks That Could Affect Our Financial Condition and Results of Operations" in Overture's quarterly report on Form 10-Q filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission for the period ended June 30, 2003. Overture undertakes no obligation to update forward-looking statements to reflect events or circumstances occurring after the date of this press release. Overture is a service mark of Overture Services.

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CONTACT: Overture Services Australia Pty Limited Mel Bohse (MD Australia), (02) 8211 0619

Overture PR Lachie Hill (Lachie Hill Communications), (02) 9953 5629

SOURCE: Overture Services, Inc.

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