Intuit Inc. and Excite Inc. have launched a Web-based financial channel for consumers.

Called the Excite Business and Investing Channel, the service uses Quicken's financial tools and information and Excite's expertise in content programming.

Excite Business and Investing, which will compete with the Microsoft Investor and Yahoo Finance sites, is accessible through both Quicken's and Excite's Web locations.

There is no charge for using the channel, which was unveiled four months after Intuit's $40 million equity investment in Excite.

The Business and Investing Channel is designed to help organize and manage personal finances. It features integrated financial decision-making tools, Web directories, Web reviews, and eight subdivisions devoted to investments, people and chat, banking and borrowing, mortgages, taxes, saving and spending, insurance, and retirement.

Revenue for Intuit and Excite will come from advertisers on the site.

As of this week, financial institutions had committed themselves to $10 million of advertising, "and that's just the beginning," said Brooks Fisher, vice president and general manager of community and marketspaces at Intuit.

"We're talking to banks about how to participate as sponsors, to bring traffic to their services," he said.

Excite brings to the partnership its advertising agency contacts, and Intuit brings financial institutions. Excite employs an advertising sales force of 44.

The Excite Network, which includes the Excite, WebCrawler, and Magellan search engines, gets 2.5 million visitors each day.

"We're good at distribution and programming, good at Web experience," said Joe Kraus, senior vice president and co-founder of Excite.

"We drove the relationship with Intuit because it has knowledge of finance and has a brand that is meaningful to the consumer as an objective and trusted source," he said.

More than 10 million people use Intuit's Quicken products. At an analyst meeting this week, Intuit chairman and chief executive officer Scott Cook said 15% of Intuit's revenues come from Quicken. Another 30% come from sales of TurboTax software and 55% from QuickBooks accounting software for small businesses.

These products' popularity comes from their ability to "take complex tasks and make them consumer-friendly," said Intuit's Mr. Fisher.

Combined with tools from Excite, "personal finance can become a more compelling experience for the consumer," he said.

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