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Blackboard Announces Partner Initiatives With Google

Agreement Will Foster Integrated Search Capabilities Within Academia

DALLAS, TX, Oct 10, 2006 (MARKET WIRE via COMTEX News Network) -- EDUCAUSE 2006 Annual Conference -- Blackboard Inc. (NASDAQ: BBBB), a leading provider of enterprise technology to the education industry, announced it has joined the Google Enterprise Professional program, becoming the first member of the program to focus primarily on educational institutions. As a Google partner, Blackboard is launching a series of efforts to enhance search capabilities for students and faculty at thousands of academic institutions around the globe. Blackboard will integrate various offerings and services with Google enterprise search technology to help facilitate deeper, more meaningful search capabilities for members of the academic community.

"The ability to organize and search information and shared resources quickly and effectively is critical to success in today's knowledge base economy," said Michael Chasen, president and CEO of Blackboard. "The Google partnership provides a tremendous value to people across a campus community, allowing them to develop greater search literacy to find information within academic departments, across disciplines and even on campuses in other locations."

"Education is a key area for Google Enterprise, and Blackboard is well established in that market. Google is excited to have Blackboard as a partner in the Google Enterprise Professional program. We're looking forward to extending the power of Google search to even more educational institutions and users," said Kevin Smith, program manager for Google Enterprise Professional.

An exciting outcome of the partnership is the integration of the Blackboard Learning System(TM) and Google Scholar. The integration of these two products, through the Blackboard Building Block for Google Scholar, enables quick and easy access to millions of scholarly references directly from courses within the Blackboard environment. Google Scholar provides a simple way to search for scholarly literature including peer-reviewed papers, theses, book abstracts and articles, from academic publishers, professional societies, preprint repositories, universities and other scholarly organizations. The Blackboard Learning System is used by millions of students and educators to access academic materials and resources at any time and from any location.

Blackboard will also offer a set of Google OneBox for Enterprise modules through a Blackboard Building Block for Google OneBox. This new integration will enable targeted searches of an institution's course catalogue, organization catalogue and learning objects repository. Google OneBox for Enterprise is a feature of the Google Search Appliance which allows users to retrieve real-time content from various data sources across their institution. This new solution, available to all Blackboard Academic Suite(TM) clients and Google Search Appliance customers, provides the most comprehensive search tool for the Blackboard platform.

As a Google Enterprise Professional partner, Blackboard will also offer consulting services to assist academic institutions who want to leverage search capabilities within and across their organization. Blackboard Global Services will work closely with client schools to gain a deep understanding of their institutional information access goals and develop strategic and tactical search solutions to support them.

The Blackboard Building Block for Google Scholar and the Blackboard Building Block for Google OneBox are both available for free download in the Blackboard Building Blocks(R) catalogue at www.blackboard.com/extend and at Google's site for external developers, code.google.com.

About Blackboard Inc.

Blackboard Inc. (NASDAQ: BBBB) is a leading provider of enterprise software applications and related services to the education industry. Founded in 1997, Blackboard enables educational innovations everywhere by connecting people and technology. Millions of people use Blackboard everyday at academic institutions around the globe, including colleges, universities, K-12 schools and other education providers, as well as textbook publishers and student-focused merchants that serve education providers and their students. Blackboard is headquartered in Washington, D.C., with offices in North America, Europe, Australia and Asia.

Blackboard
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Any statements in this press release about future expectations, plans and prospects for Blackboard and other statements containing the words "believes," "anticipates," "plans," "expects," "will," and similar expressions, constitute forward-looking statements within the meaning of The Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Actual results may differ materially from those indicated by such forward-looking statements as a result of various important factors, including the factors discussed in the "Risk Factors" section of our Form 10-Q filed on August 9, 2006 with the SEC. In addition, the forward-looking statements included in this press release represent the Company's views as of October 10, 2006. The Company anticipates that subsequent events and developments will cause the Company's views to change. However, while the Company may elect to update these forward-looking statements at some point in the future, the Company specifically disclaims any obligation to do so. These forward-looking statements should not be relied upon as representing the Company's views as of any date subsequent to October 10, 2006.

Senior Manager Public Relations at Blackboard:
Melissa Chotiner
Blackboard Inc.
202-463-4860 ext. 2404

Media Contact, Fleishman-Hillard:
Amy Storey
Fleishman-Hillard Inc.
+1 202 828-8819

SOURCE: Blackboard Inc.