196 EYEWIRE LAUNCHES PORTAL SITE
February 1, 1999
EyeWire, Inc. (formerly Adobe Studios) will develop a first-of-its-kind resource
that will provide visual content - such as video, animation, photography, type
fonts, illustrations and clip art -- and related graphics software, products and
services within a single Web site: EyeWire.com (http://www.eyewire.com).
EyeWire's key target market is the creative professional community, whose functions
include graphic design, advertising, Web site creation and multimedia. According
to EyeWire there are 500,000-plus professional graphic designers who regularly
design and produce for print, broadcast and the Internet engaged in this industry.
They spend several billion dollars annually on products and services.
EyeWire's goal is to develop a site that will be a one-stop resource for all the
needs of graphic designers, creative directors, art directors, broadcast designers,
Web site designers, multimedia designers and desktop publishers. The site will
also be of use to people charged with developing graphics materials who are within
the small business community, the education industry, and non-profit agencies.
Currently, people developing professional business communications are forced to
find and purchase content, products and services through multiple sources, many of
which are not found on the Internet. Using its own products and a rich suite of
products/services from industry partners, EyeWire.com will create a time-saving
"one-stop shop" that will provide:
Graphics professionals with the industry's most comprehensive selection of
visual content, a diverse range of editorial features and how-to's, opportunities
to buy and sell related products and services online, and the ability to enhance
their expertise through participation within their own online community;
Business users with "content on demand" that offers the right visual solution -
typeface, graphics or multimedia - or service, such as printing or distribution,
without demanding that they do any sourcing or even leave their software
Both markets will be served by EyeWire.com's MyWire "personal portal" that will
allow users to build their own site that features favorite products and services;
individualized information, such as pertinent articles, industry trade shows or
competition deadlines; and personalization capabilities, such as flexible "look and
feel" tailoring and support for multiple foreign languages.
Key to the EyeWire.com initiative will be leveraging the EyeWire core customer
base, which has been derived from the company's industry-leading direct mail
catalog and customer service operation.
"Becoming a portal -- even a vertical portal -- demands traffic, which we
anticipate will come largely from converting our catalog customers to Web-based
customers. We have a built-in traffic generator based on our record as the leading
cataloger for visual content," said Brad Zumwalt, Chairman and President of
EyeWire. EyeWire has mailed over 50 million catalogs to date. Currently they are
mailing about 800,000 catalogs a month to business and professional graphic arts
users. Their mass mailing program has been developed and refined for over a decade
and is supported by EyeWire's telephone and Web-based customer service operation.
Much of EyeWire's royalty free image collection has been provided by SuperStock.
EyeWire also distributes the Digital Vision collection from the U.K. as well as other
royalty free products. The one resource which designers have great need of, and
which EyeWire currently
does not supply, is "Rights Protected" photography. Look for EyeWire to find some
way to offer RP images to their massive customer base in the near future.
EyeWire was founded in 1985 (then known as Image Club Graphics) as a distributor of
individual digital typefaces. They were acquired by Aldus Software in 1994. Aldus
was purchased by Adobe Systems in September 1994. During its four years as an
Adobe subsidiary, the company grew more than 450%. In the fall of 1998, company
management reacquired the transformed company from Adobe, naming the newly
independent organization EyeWire Inc. EyeWire has a growth rate of 50% per year,
plus profits and revenue exceeding $20 million.