News Release

Akamai, KPMG Join Cisco Systems, UNDP In Building NetAid Technology

NetAid Network Will Be Unprecedented in Scale and Integration 125,000 Simultaneous Live Streams, 1,500 servers in Over 90 Data Centers Worldwide
Aug 12, 1999

San Jose, Calif. and New York, NY -- August 12, 1999 -- Cisco Systems and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) announced today that they will deploy the largest scale Internet technology and the most integrated combination of media ever used to promote social change as part of NetAid, a long term initiative to help end the growing problems of extreme poverty around the world. Besides Cisco and UNDP, two leading technology companies are contributing significantly to NetAid as sponsors: KPMG, a leader in eEngineering, is building the web site to scale for mass audiences. Akamai Technologies, which operates a global Internet content delivery service, will serve the site content.

NetAid will mark the first time that the power of the Internet, the reach of television and radio, and the energy and impact of world class artists come together on a global scale to fight extreme poverty, which affects more than one billion people who live on less than one dollar per day. The NetAid web site,, will launch September 8. Three overlapping concerts on October 9 with world class artists in New York, London and Geneva will be broadcast around the world and webcast live. This initiative is expected to generate one billion hits and millions of actions to fight poverty, from donations of time and money, to the contribution of ideas and involvement with leading anti-poverty organizations.

"NetAid represents a powerful call to action for countries, companies and people," said Don Listwin, executive vice president of Cisco Systems. "Using the power of the Internet, NetAid will be a lasting resource in the fight to end extreme poverty."

The network architecture for NetAid, designed by Cisco, employs three distinct components and includes a total of over 1,500 servers located in more than 90 data centers worldwide:

KPMG, in addition to building the site, also is developing the electronic commerce capability that will be hosted on two secure servers, and managed by Cisco at its San Jose operations center. KPMG developed this site in less than 90 days. It is designed to handle up to 60 million hits per hour, one of the largest sites ever developed.

Akamai Technologies will serve the web site content using Akamai's distributed network of over 1,200 servers in more than 90 datacenters worldwide. The web site will be managed and monitored from Akamai's Network Operating Center in Cambridge, MA and will have the capacity to serve 12 Gb/s of content and receive 60 million hits per hour - 10 times the peak of the last Olympics and 1998 Men's World Cup. Cisco will deploy an additional 38 web servers using RedHat Linux/Apache software to host the text portions of the site.

The live streaming of the concerts on two channels - one carrying the concerts, the other providing a continuous backstage feed - will use 300 RealVideo G2 splitters and will be managed by Real Networks from their Seattle operations center. The live streaming will serve as many as 125,000 simultaneous viewers, ten times the largest capacity ever used.

"Akamai is very pleased to be working with Cisco and KPMG as a NetAid sponsor. Using the Internet to raise awareness about global poverty is a cause we are proud to support," said George Conrades, Akamai Chairman and CEO. "Our global network is ready to serve the huge crowds expected to visit the NetAid site throughout the summer and fall -- with speed and reliability."

"KPMG is pleased that Cisco and the UNDP invited us to join them as a key sponsor of NetAid. As a worldwide leader in eEngineering, it is gratifying and exciting for us to be able to deploy this revolutionary technology toward such an important humanitarian goal," said Steve Butler, Chairman & CEO of KPMG LLP. "It is fitting that the largest scale Internet technology deployment in the world will have the potential to positively impact the lives of so many around the world, including people who may never have heard of the Internet."

The NetAid live events, TV, radio, webcast, and web site will be seamlessly integrated in look and feel, content and sequence in order to maximize the unique value of each medium and maximize synergies between them. For instance, people watching the concerts on TV or via webcast will be prompted by artists and issue-oriented film packages to click online to learn more about successful efforts to address the same issues or causes of poverty, download kits or take action.

"In addition to concerts, Net Aid is the emergence of a long-term global website dedicated to helping the people of the developing world," said UNDP Administrator Mark Malloch Brown.

The functionality of the web site will change over time. Initially designed to handle large volumes of traffic driven by the concerts, the site will evolve to include more diverse content including chat rooms, classifieds that match resources and needs, portal functions that link people with leading anti-poverty organizations around the world and more.

Through a unique network of 134 country offices, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) helps people in 174 countries and territories to help themselves, focusing on poverty elimination, environmental regeneration, job creation and the advancement of women. In support of these goals, UNDP is frequently asked to assist in promoting sound governance and market development and to support rebuilding societies in the aftermath of war and humanitarian emergencies.

KPMG LLP is the U.S. member firm of KPMG International. In the U.S., KPMG partners and professionals provide a wide range of accounting, tax and consulting services. As a provider of information-based services, KPMG delivers understandable business advice - helping clients analyze their businesses with true clarity, raise their level of performance, achieve growth and enhance shareholder value. KPMG International's member firms have more than 100,000 professionals, including 6,800 partners, in 160 countries.

Akamai Technologies is transforming the way content is delivered over the Internet. With an unprecedented guarantee for improving the speed and reliability of Web sites, Akamai's Internet content delivery network has grown to over 900 servers in 15 countries, and serves over one-quarter billion hits per day. Akamai's customers include CNN, GO Network, Yahoo!, and over 30 leading businesses ranging from new media companies to eCommerce firms and financial Web sites. Headquartered in Cambridge, MA, Akamai Technologies -- -- has 150 employees. Akamai (pronounced AH kuh my) is Hawaiian for intelligent, clever and cool.