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Autobytel Acquires Lead Providers Cyber Ventures, Autotropolis

September 20, 2010

IRVINE, Calif.Autobytel Inc., a provider of online consumer leads and marketing resources, has acquired the privately-held, Tampa, Fla.-based Cyber Ventures Inc. and Autotropolis Inc.

Founded in 2003, Cyber Ventures and Autotropolis use proprietary content and search marketing capabilities to generate and sell high-quality, high-volume in-market leads. Cyber Ventures and Autotropolis have common ownership and share operating staff and other administrative and operational resources. On a combined basis, the two companies had 2009 annual revenues of approximately $10 million.

Autobytel reported annual revenues of $53 million for 2009 and $23.9 million for the first half of 2010. The transaction is expected to be immediately accretive to Autobytel’s earnings.

“This transaction extends our core growth and margin-enhancement strategies and solidifies Autobytel’s position as the premier provider of automotive-related consumer purchase requests in our industry,” said Jeffrey Coats, Autobytel’s president and chief executive officer. “Given our already large and growing auto dealer and OEM distribution network, the addition of Cyber Ventures and Autotropolis gives Autobytel a significant competitive advantage by providing us with an additional major source of high-quality, ready-to-buy consumer purchase requests coming directly from our network of branded consumer websites. We expect our higher-margin, internally-generated purchase requests to increase by upwards of 150 percent, and our total purchase request volume to grow by more than 40 percent.”

“The acquisition also gives us additional meaningful content for today’s automotive consumer and further enhances our Internet footprint with more than two million additional page views per month. We also expect to benefit greatly from the superior search engine optimization techniques and a growing suite of digital automotive products developed by the talented Cyber Ventures and Autotropolis team,” Coats added.

Cyber Ventures and Autotropolis co-founders Ian Bentley and William Ferriolo and certain members of their staff will join the Autobytel team.

“Joining forces with Autobytel will give both organizations complementary strengths,” Bentley said. “We look forward to pursuing the growth opportunities that we believe are ahead with the economic recovery in the automotive industry.”

“We are pleased to be on the ground floor of Autobytel’s strategic expansion plans and excited to be associated with the pioneer firm in our industry. As a result, our dealer customers and consumers will benefit greatly from the many value-added services provided by Autobytel that help dealers sell more cars and assist consumers in their entire automotive shopping and ownership experience through best-in-class online automotive content” Ferriolo said.

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