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Yahoo! and HP acquire photo sharing sites

By dpreview staff on Mar 23, 2005 at 13:23 GMT

Two photo sharing websites have been snapped up by major corporations. Internet portal Yahoo! was the first to announce that it had acquired Canadian company Ludicorp Research & Development Ltd, which operates year-old photo sharing website Flickr. While HP has just announced that it has agreed to buy Snapfish, which has 13 million registered members. Snapfish offers free photo sharing, editing tools and software as well as online print ordering. In 2001 Canon bought photo sharing site Fotango and Eastman Kodak acquired Ofoto.

Click here to read the Yahoo! acquires Flickr story

HP Press Release:

HP To Acquire Leading Online Photo Service Snapfish

Acquisition enables HP to provide consumers with more choice for sharing, storing, printing photos; broadens HP's position in the digital photography market

PALO ALTO, Calif., March 21, 2005 HP today announced that it has signed a definitive agreement to acquire Snapfish, a leading online photo service.

Snapfish's expertise in online photo services, coupled with HP's worldwide customer reach, will rapidly enhance HP's ability to capitalize on the growing market for online photo printing.

Snapfish offers high-quality photo products and services. These include free online photo sharing, photo storage and management, free editing tools and software, online print ordering, wireless imaging services for camera phone and color handset users, and more than 70 personalized photo products, such as calendars, mousepads and the like.

Snapfish also provides infrastructure services to leading retailers, internet service providers and wireless carriers, allowing them to offer these same products and services to their own consumers.

"Bringing Snapfish into HP's digital photography portfolio is a strategic move for both companies," said Larry Lesley, senior vice president, Consumer Imaging and Printing, HP. "By offering a superior online photo service through Snapfish, we will be able to offer the home photographer greater choice when deciding exactly how, when and where they share, store and print their photos."

Snapfish has more than 13 million registered members and is growing at a rate of more than 500,000 members per month due in part to high customer satisfaction - 90 percent of Snapfish's customers have recommended the service to others.

"This combination of HP's leadership in digital imaging and home printing with Snapfish's leadership in online photography will provide our customers and partners with an expanded mix of quality, value and choice that we believe no comparable business can provide," said Ben Nelson, president of Snapfish, who will lead the new division within HP. "Snapfish customers should know that, following the acquisition, the key benefits of our service and their overall digital photography experience will only get better."

Snapfish customers will enjoy the same benefits they receive today, along with added benefits from HP's digital photography portfolio, including easy access to products and information that will help enhance their digital photography experience. In addition, all of their images and personal information will remain safe and secure.

Whether a consumer wants the immediate gratification of printing photos at home or the simplicity of ordering a large batch of prints or photo merchandise online, HP and Snapfish will provide a more simple, affordable and comprehensive digital photography experience.

The acquisition, which is subject to various standard closing conditions, is expected to close in April 2005.

About Snapfish

Snapfish is a leading online photo service, with more than 13 million registered members and 350 million unique photos stored online. Snapfish, which is based in San Francisco and has operations in the United Kingdom, enables film camera, digital camera and camera phone users to share, print and store their most important photo memories at the lowest prices - online or off. Snapfish is the most often used site for printing digital photographs online, according to InfoTrends, and has received a Rising Star Award as the site demonstrating the fastest growth on the Internet, as measured by Nielsen//NetRatings. Additional information is available at http://www.snapfish.com and http://www.Snapfish.co.uk.

HP

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