SOURCE: Healthline Networks, Inc.

February 01, 2007 13:13 ET

Mitsui and Healthline Enter Into Joint Development Agreement for Japanese Health Information Site

Partnership Leverages Mitsui's Investment in Healthline to Build Health Search Platform for Japanese Market

SAN FRANCISCO, CA -- (MARKET WIRE) -- February 1, 2007 -- Healthline Networks (www.healthline.com), the leading provider of intelligent health information services, today announced that it has entered into a Joint Development Agreement (JDA) with Mitsui and Co. Ltd of Japan to develop a Japanese-language version of Healthline's medically guided search and navigation platform.

Mitsui, a $35 billion revenue Japanese trading company, made a strategic investment in Healthline Networks in early 2006. Japan has the second largest healthcare system, and is one of the fastest aging nations in the world. By developing a search platform that integrates advanced search & navigation capabilities and rich content sources, Mitsui will be able to empower Japanese health seekers to quickly and easily get information that helps them make more informed health care decisions.

The platform, which is expected to be completed in late 2007, will give Japanese consumers access to search, navigation, and content powered by Healthline's semantic taxonomy, the largest, multilayered consumer medical database of its kind, created and maintained by a team of physicians and medical informatics professionals.

"Mitsui would like to take a proactive position in addressing the healthcare budget crisis by leveraging Healthline's technology, which offers what we believe is the best healthcare information available anywhere," said Makoto Kuroda, General Manager of Mitsui's Life Science Division. "We strongly believe that Healthline will be as great a success in Japan as it is in America, and we look forward to working closely with the Healthline team to create a version of Healthline that will greatly benefit Japanese health information seekers."

"The aging global population is accelerating the pressure on healthcare systems around the world, and Japan is a clear example of this phenomenon," said West Shell III, chairman and chief executive officer of Healthline. "Japan is the first market in which Healthline will internationalize its platform; we're excited for the opportunity to work with Mitsui as an investor and partner to create online health information services that will serve as a step to help alleviate the crisis."

Healthline Networks' taxonomy-driven platform features a suite of intelligent health information services includes search, navigation and content components to help consumers navigate the complex world of health and medicine in an often cluttered and confusing online environment. Healthline worked with over 1,100 physicians and its team of medical informatics professionals to develop the largest semantic taxonomy of its kind for consumer health, which integrates multiple databases covering drugs, symptoms, risk factors, physician specialties, diagnostic and treatment procedures, insurance billing codes, synonyms and more -- to deliver the most precise, relevant search results for health information seekers.

About Mitsui and Co. Ltd.

Mitsui and Co., Ltd. (TSE: 8031) (NASDAQ: MITSY) is one of the largest business engineering and trading companies in the world and is active in a wide range of trading activities, along with the development of energy sources and other natural resources for various industries. These include export, import, domestic and offshore transactions in such industrial materials as steel, non-ferrous metals and chemicals as well as in machinery, electronic and industrial products and lifestyle-related products, including foodstuffs, textiles and general merchandise. Mitsui is also involved in various businesses related to the aforementioned activities, as well as telecommunications and IT, service businesses and regional development.

About Healthline

Healthline Networks offers an innovative approach to meeting the needs of today's health information seeker. The company's unique consumer healthcare taxonomy, started in 1999 in collaboration with physicians and medical informatics professionals, powers a suite of intelligent health search, navigation and content services. Combining advanced search technology with deep medical expertise, Healthline and its business partners -- a network of trusted destination sites that include publishers, portals, search engines, employers and health plans -- help consumers navigate the complex world of healthcare information, empowering them to make more confident, informed decisions. Headquartered in San Francisco, Healthline is backed by VantagePoint Venture Partners, Reed Elsevier Ventures, Mitsui & Co., Ltd., and JHK Investments, LLC.

Contact Information

  • Editorial Contacts:
    Jon Siegal or Shannon Murphy
    Schwartz Communications, Inc.
    781-684-0770 or 415-512-0770
    healthline@schwartz-pr.com