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Zoesis Studios

Heinz EZ Squirt Deploys Living Products(TM) Advertising

A New Breed of Interactive Advertising Brings EZ Squirt Ketchup to Life

NEWTON, Massachusetts (February 22, 2002) Heinz North America today became the first company to deploy Living Products technology to advertise a product on the Internet. The site, www.ezsquirtland.com, was created by Zoesis Studios, an award-winning high-tech studio dedicated to giving interactive characters functioning minds of their own.

Kelly Stitt, Heinz Senior Brand Manager for EZ Squirt, says "I'm excited to be working with Zoesis Studios. The Living Products ad they created for EZ Squirt has proven to be a unique, fun, and engaging experience that changes kids attitudes about our brand."

Living Products are interactive, computer-animated branded products, such as cereals, snacks, beverages, and cosmetics, which appear to be convincingly alive. The products have feelings and are aware of the user. Many adults, teens, and children who visit Living Products ads spend over 60 minutes playing, bonding and falling in love with the products. This interaction results in higher impact than is achieved with television advertising or traditional promotions.

According to NFO WorldGroup research, Living Products raises brand appeal and purchase intent more effectively than other interactive advertising that uses Shockwave and Flash. Specifically, a study for a popular national breakfast product showed a substantial Flash-based site having no impact. Living Products delivered a 30% increase in brand appeal and a 200% increase in purchase intent, measured five days after exposure to the advertising.

Living Products effectiveness has been carefully studied. Post-exposure surveys show visitors overwhelmingly like or love Living Products. Half say they want to revisit the ad after the study, and tracking data shows they return an average of three times. Half say they want to spread the word to friends and family, urging others to visit. Positive changes in brand attitude go hand-in-hand with these responses.

Joseph Bates, co-founder and president of Zoesis Studios, says, "Advertisers are moving away from banner ads and toward product placement in online experiences. Living Products is more effective than product placement because we make the product itself the focus of interaction. With this approach, people fall in love with the products, not with the experiences. We're very pleased that Heinz has recognized this, and deployed Living Products for its flagship children's brand."

About Zoesis Studios
Zoesis Studios, located in Newton, Massachusetts, develops interactive advertising and entertainment, based on proprietary technology for giving characters minds of their own. The company spun out of a Carnegie Mellon University research project in 1996, receiving financial backing as well as technical collaboration from Fujitsu Limited, one of the largest computer corporations in the world. Further information about Zoesis Studios can be located at www.zoesis.com.

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