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Deprecated - Altavista, Alltheweb.com Forum

FAST Buys Altavista's Enterprise Search Business

 2:29 pm on Jun 17, 2003 (gmt 0)

According to The Register:

"FAST has bought the enterprise search business of AltaVista from Overture. The company is to migrate AltaVista's 200-plus customers to its own FAST Data Search suite. "

More details, here:



 2:31 pm on Jun 17, 2003 (gmt 0)

Official: [fast.no...]


 2:39 pm on Jun 17, 2003 (gmt 0)

Great find guys!

..will allow FAST to provide AltaVistaís customers uninterrupted support and maintenance on their current platform and an opportunity to migrate to FAST Data Searchô, FASTís powerful suite of enterprise search and real-time filter solutions.

This really confirms FASTs focus on enterprise search. In which they are second to none imo.

This acquisition will not affect FASTís product direction, as there are no plans to integrate the AltaVista enterprise search technology with FAST Data Search.

It seems FAST still will support the AV customers, but encourage them to switch to FAST's product, which among other cool things support 225 file formats 54 languages.

I wonder what the price for something like that might be?
Exciting stuff :)


 3:27 pm on Jun 17, 2003 (gmt 0)

Sounds like a logical move.
So what Fast is buying is 200 contracts then. They are apparently totally convinced their own product line is in every detail better than AVs - which leads me to the conclusion comparing the two websearch solutions would yield a similar result...


 3:52 pm on Jun 17, 2003 (gmt 0)

I don't get the lines of division here.

Overture bought AllTheWeb? And the se side of things?

But they did not buy the "enterpise" part of FAST? Which is what? What does that mean?

Overture bought _all_ of Altavista.

And now turned around and sold that back to the enterprise part of Fast?

It is all rather confusing.


 3:53 pm on Jun 17, 2003 (gmt 0)

Interesting stuff! It's wild the way the world changes quickly. :) I still catch myself calling AllTheWeb's web search "FAST" and I have to remind myself that AllTheWeb is now wholly owned and run by Overture now. Hopefully I'll get it straight eventually. :)


 3:59 pm on Jun 17, 2003 (gmt 0)

It is all rather confusing.

Very confusing! I just went to check a page that I have that details the major players. On 2003-04-21, Overture officially acquired Fast. On 2003-04-28, Overture officially acquired AV. I'm with Brett on this one, where is the division?


 4:01 pm on Jun 17, 2003 (gmt 0)

It's all Overture, pageoneresults--everything except enterprise search, which is consolidated into FAST. So think of the forum name as "Alltheweb.com by Overture" and you've got a more accurate picture. :)


 4:19 pm on Jun 17, 2003 (gmt 0)

OK: Both Fast and Altavista had a Websearch division and a corporate search division.
Fast has sold their complete websearch division, including ATW, to Overture. Fast is now a pure enterprise search company.

Altavista was bought completely by Overture. OV has now sold the enterprise search division of AV to Fast.

Which leaves us with Fast as a corporate search player, and OVerture as a websearch player.

Looks like ATW still operates under the Fast USA label. The integration is surely underway, but not completed yet, afaik.


 4:29 pm on Jun 17, 2003 (gmt 0)

It doesn't seem so strange to me. Enterprise seach can be different from web search and it seems clear that Fast is concentrating on that while Overtue is doing their web thing.

Who says they don't hav a technology pact? (even if that's not a neccessecty).


 9:20 pm on Jun 17, 2003 (gmt 0)

IMO heini got it right. Fast is now Enterprise/corporate search only - eg. NO web search. (Not completly sure about where ATW fits in though).

Overture now owns both the Fast and AV Web search divisions - eg. they don't want enterprise search.

Tim, could you help us out please and set things straight?!


 9:30 pm on Jun 17, 2003 (gmt 0)

Perhaps it is all paper exchange, and market allocation vs. a real technology buy? Smells like creative book keeping to me....


 9:39 pm on Jun 17, 2003 (gmt 0)

Littleman. I think you have hit the nail on the head, a division of interests it seems, but a paper money deal so that everyone gets what they want.

If Fast owns the corporate solutions of both its former self before the partial selloff of Websearch to O! and also AV's solutions, - thats a forgone conclusion - change of interests.

If overture own both the search technologies of FAST and AV, and also with their own PPC programs, then What are they going to do with the Web Search Tech's?

Integrate them - mmm!
Consolidate the advertising and PPC under overture and strip out all the other mediums - i.e. PT
Go for G's crown - love to see it, but don't know if the Brass at O! has the cahonies to see it through.


 9:46 pm on Jun 17, 2003 (gmt 0)

>Not completly sure about where ATW fits in though

Sold to OV as part of the assets of the Fast websearch division. Note that ATW still has the Fast Search & Transfer ASA tag on it, that's why we still got the forum running under the current title. But it is sold, and gets operated currently mostly (completely?) out of Wellesley, MA.

>creative book keeping
Not my area of expertise, but it makes sense for OV to sell off the corporate search customers they got with the Altavista deal.
Fast however, the EX-owners of ATW, are definitely out of websearch and focusing on coporate search. The former AV corporate search team is now with Fast, Fast has new customers.
The corporate search market is huge.


 9:56 pm on Jun 17, 2003 (gmt 0)

I think we are talking Apples and Oranges, web search is a totally different beast to corp search.

Traditionaly corp search has been sold off the back of web search, the OVER/ATW deal changed that. OVER have accepted that PPC doesn't quite have a model in the corp search world [:)], the question is can ATW continue to make gains without the "loss leader" of the web search.

Verity's model seems to suggest they may have a slim chance, having said that I wouldn't want to go up against a Google Appliance Rep in the current maeketplace.


 10:11 pm on Jun 17, 2003 (gmt 0)

Good Shout NFFC,

I don't know enough about the corporate search world to understand what Fast may be dealing with regarding G's corporate side, a little beyond me as i have never been approached that way.

But i still feel that with all the brown paper bags under the table been passed, what are overtue's plans for the public search tech that they own and being fully operational under AV and ATW?


 10:18 pm on Jun 17, 2003 (gmt 0)

Does anyone think Clear Channel or Viacom will someday buy out the search engines? Then they would have a total monopoly over radio, tv, billboards, and all information online.


 10:25 pm on Jun 17, 2003 (gmt 0)

very much a demographic and industry related proposition - SE's regarding the big industrial players are very shaky grounds, a lot of companies and their shareholders lost a lot of money when the .com burst and continued to shrivel, it seems now, the share prices and stability of them is gaining a standardisation in trend with old school industries, but money is tight - investment wise due to many extraneous factors - i.e. certain first world country views, and actions.


 10:31 pm on Jun 17, 2003 (gmt 0)

>I wouldn't want to go up against a Google Appliance Rep in the current maeketplace
Don't know the current sales stats of Google's app, but last I looked Fast was lightyears ahead in the corporate search market.

<added> Actually Fast claims #2 in the enterprise search market, with Verity probably being the leader.


 3:19 am on Jun 18, 2003 (gmt 0)

Heini said:

Don't know the current sales stats of Google's app, but last I looked Fast was lightyears ahead in the corporate search market.

I agree Heini - corporate search is a global market. Anyone been able to buy a Google search appliance outside the USA?

Most big corporates want a unified global corporate search solution - Google hasn't yet got one to my knowledge - unless you can put in in a centralised USA office.

I know it has announced the appliance - and shipped them in the USA - but despite many requests, we certainly haven't been able to buy them for customers here in Australia.

<rummage around, rummage> ah ha - here it is:

At this time, the Google Search Appliance is only shipping to locations in the United States and Canada. If you are located internationally, but your organization has access to a location in the United States or Canada, it is possible the Google Search Appliance can meet your needs today.



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