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Excite launches business channel

The first fruits of the seven-year partnership between Excite and Intuit will be unveiled with a new business and investing channel on Excite.

Today Excite (XCIT) and Intuit (INTU) are unveiling the first fruits of their seven-year partnership -- a new business and investing channel on Excite.

The site, dubbed "Excite Business & Investing by," replaces the current business and investing channel and promises to offer broad-based services to everyone from the common working person who wonders how she'll afford car payments to the multi-millionaire with a large portfolio to invest.

In June, Intuit, which produces the popular financial program Quicken, forked over $40 million for a 19 percent stake in Excite. At the time the two also inked a seven-year partnership.

The competition among comprehensive Web sites that want to become users' home page is fierce and getting more intense every day. Search engine sites are natural home bases, as most people are attempting to organize the massive amount of information on the Web. To lure users, companies are rushing to line up the best-known and most powerful partners.

Excite officials clearly are hoping that naming a channel after Quicken, a well-known program, will aid them in that endeavor.

While there are plenty of other financial sites on the Net, including on rival sites such as Yahoo and Microsoft Network's Microsoft Investor, Brooks Fisher, vice president of community for Intuit, said this site is different.

Most of the other sites require users to pay for more services and cater to the higher end users, who have more money.

"We try to be both comprehensive and convenient," Fisher said. "We wanted a service that's free to everybody and that was going to reach out not just to the high investing consumers but also to everybody no matter what life stage they're in."

Fisher said that both Excite and Intuit are committed to keeping the channel free and supported by ad revenues. The channel will include chat, moderated bulletin boards, advice, and lots of editorial copy to help people manage their finances, according to Intuit.