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Internet portal Excite, Mountain View, Calif., today officially names Fred Siegel, formerly senior VP-marketing at QVC, West Chester, Pa., senior VP-marketing. The appointment was expected.

James Desrosier, former exec VP-marketing at Excite, left the search engine earlier this year to pursue other interests. Mr. Siegel will oversee all marketing, advertising and promotions for Excite and sister portal WebCrawler.

Yahoo! kicks off

Major League Soccer deal

Yahoo! will be the official Internet navigational guide for Major League Soccer in a four-year deal being announced today. Yahoo! will bolster its soccer content and encourage users to tune into broadcasts through banners and promotional sweepstakes.

NetRadio Network launches 1st TV spots

NetRadio Network (www. launches a $2.5 million TV campaign today, with animated spots breaking in the Minneapolis market. The campaign will start airing in national cable markets Nov. 1, including Boston, Chicago, New York and San Francisco.

Created by free-lance team Jim Lacey and Bill Bethell and animated by Reel Works, both Minneapolis, the spots feature a talking chameleon who hypes NetRadio's 150 music channels. The tag is "Music from a far better place." The campaign will also include online video ads of the spots. NetRadio, owned by music and software distributor Navarre Corp., is in a quiet period before an initial public offering.

iXL buys, merges two Chicago-area shops

Interactive agency iXL, Atlanta, announced Oct. 1 it purchased interactive agency Two Way Communications, Chicago. IXL also purchased software company Ionix Development Corp., Oak Brook, Ill. The combined businesses will be called iXL-Chicago and offer high-tech, design and marketing services. Terms of the deals were not disclosed.

NPD Group launches

Web research tool

NPD Group this week announces the launch of its Web Intercept Site Evaluation service, being offered by the researcher's interactive division, NPD Online Research. The tool will help marketers evaluate Web-site effectiveness through online polling across dozens of participating Web sites.

Users of Real Media

go online to shop

According to a survey of nearly 10,000 Real Media Network users conducted by consultancy Laredo Group, 72% of respondents make purchases online and 77% of those shopping online use credit cards. Also, the Los Angeles Times and Newsday have joined the Real Media Network of local newspaper sites.

@Home adds

new auto advertisers

@Home Network, which delivers high-speed Internet services, signed General Motors Corp., Toyota Motor Sales USA and American Honda Motor Co.'s Acura division to test rich-media ads on its service. Users can see photos and videos of cars, select product information and link to dealers.

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