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Excite announces 2-for-1 split

The online directory becomes the latest Net company to announce a stock split this year, joining, K-Tel, and AOL.

Excite today became the latest Internet company to announce a 2-for-1 stock split this year, joining, K-Tel, and America Online in splitting its shares.

Shares in the Internet directory jumped 9.625 to 85.625 in morning trading, approaching the company's 52-week high. The stock has traded as high as 93.3125 and as low as 13.8750 during the past 52 weeks.

The 2-for-1 stock split becomes effective to shareholders of record on July 6.

"The stock split is designed to improve trading liquidity and broaden ownership of the company's common shares," the company said in a statement. After the split, Excite will have about 50.39 million shares outstanding.

The run-up in Net stocks has exceeded many analysts expectations, prompting some companies to split their shares in order to make them more affordable to individual investors.

In April, announced a 2-for-1 stock split that took effect in June. K-Tel announced a similar split that same month. In February, AOL announced a 2-for-1 split.

In other Excite news announced today, Andy Halliday has been tapped for the newly created position of vice president of commerce. Halliday will lead e-commerce efforts for both Excite and its subsidiary, WebCrawler. He also is charged with all planning and development of e-commerce initiatives for the Excite Network. In addition, Jeffrey Berg, chairman and CEO of International Creative Management, a talent and literary agency, has been named to Excite's board of directors.