Ernst & Young LLP has acquired a significant minority share in Intralinks Inc., a New York-based provider of secure Web-based communication for participants in financial deals.

The investment, whose size Intralinks declined to specify, makes Ernst & Young the largest outside investor in the privately held company.

The companies said they expect the investment to accelerate the expansion of Intralinks' on-line offerings.

These are meant to let participants in paper-intensive deals - such as loan syndications, mergers and acquisitions, and initial public offerings - communicate privately over the Internet.

"Intralinks is building the definitive platform for businesses to quickly, safely, and cost-effectively collaborate on multimillion-dollar transactions," said Carolyn Buck Luce, an Ernst & Young partner involved in the company's electronic commerce effort.

Intralinks' clients include J.P. Morgan & Co., Bank of America, PNC Bank Corp., and Royal Bank of Canada.

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