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Well here's my thoughts if you care to read them.

With the limited insight that I have on the USWeb merger, I will say that for the most part I view this merger with some optimistic pessimism. (Let me explain the oxymoron.)

I want to buy into the idea of the fleshing out of the b-b offerings of usweb. The truth is, it's hard to win some critical engagements in the b-b area when quite frankly USWeb has an overall lack of large scale ERP and other backend systems like PeopleSoft and SAP. They get eaten up when it comes time to put the rubber to the road against IBM, EDS, etc. So from that stand point, assuming Whitman can deliver, (that's not a dig I just don't know about them) it seems like a good idea.

But the issues that confound me, and maybe this deal will adrees that as well, is that USWeb has a hard time getting it's own house in order. The lack of a consistent comp plan for it's employees across the board, which has been promised for over a year now, is still not a reality. Secondly, Robert Shaw has made at least two statments that have proven whether by design or by happenstance, have proven not to be correct.

1)At a conference call upon the aquisiton of MMG he made the comment that "we are the size we want to be and now it's time to grow organically." (paraphrased)

2) He refuted a red herring article that explained that Shaw was looking for an exit strategy as CEO. The article was in the words of strategist Ian Small complete "bullshit." Three months later, that article seems to have proven correct.

I think that there's currently an integrity issue here. An inconsistent face from upper managment to it's employees without whom, in this business, you don't go anywhere.

Only time will tell if the merger will adress these concerns or if we just take one more spin on the USWeb merry go round. If the CEO is half as dynamic and exciting as he sounds, we may be in for quite a ride, but I can't ignore the issues of the past year. Revenue growth or not, you gotta' keep the people happy and right now, morale has probably suffered.

BTW - love to hear suggestions on a name for NewCo.

Rebuttals and comments welcome,
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First of all, I've been a team member here at WHIT for about two months now, a recent Big 5 guy that wanted an actual 'life'. I'd like to give my perspective on WHIT as a company.

So far, so great. If you look at us overall, you see a company that has literally transformed over the years under Bob Bernard's leadership. Several years back, we were just another contractor slugging out code and earning billable hours. In a few short years, Bob Bernard has transformed WHIT into a *profitable* $500M company, with nearly 4,000 employees, doing work in just about every sector of technology.

I think the merger is going to be a great thing-- first, it allows us WHIT folks to grow with the addition of a lot of talented Web developers (something that's in short supply 'round here, at least). Second, if what Mosafef said is accurate, I think it's a great opportunity to provide the right kind of structure in place to support the USWB folks. Together-- the sky is the limit.

I do have a couple concerns with the merger, though. First of all, it adds a level of uncertainty, and will almost definitely affect profits, although hopefully gross revenue won't be adversely affected (as per the risks stated in the SEC filing this week). I think there's opportunity for growing pains as well-- in the cities where we both have large offices, the integration may not be as smooth as we'd all like to see. Also, I chose to work for a smaller company for a specific reason-- it will be interesting to see if we can avoid the bureaucracy that is inherent in most large organizations.

Finally, my suggestions for a new name (apologies to those companies that might already be using these):

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