Proxy voting market provides a new area of business for Syntegra -
- ISS to use SettleNET & CREST for proxy voting services -

Syntegra and Institutional Shareholder Services, Inc. (ISS), a leading
provider of proxy voting and corporate governance services, today announced
that SettleNET, Syntegra's secure end-to-end Internet Protocol (IP) network
service would be used to offer ISS's proxy voting services via CREST.

Electronic proxy voting functionality is being implemented into CREST
on January 20, 2003, to broaden and enhance its offering. Electronic
enhancements will include: notification that a meeting is to take place;
notification of the results of a meeting; the ability to submit a proxy
instruction; and the ability for a Voting Service Provider (VSP) to submit a
proxy instruction on behalf of the registered holder. As a VSP, ISS will
have access to CREST's new proxy voting functionality and can offer
custodial banks and institutional investors across Europe the use of ISS's
VoteX platform. ISS will submit proxy voting instructions to CREST on
behalf of its customers via Syntegra's SettleNET service.

Phil Hicks, director of operations at ISS, said: "The conversion of
proxy voting to an electronic service eliminates manual processes, makes it
easy for investors to exercise their fiduciary responsibilities and allows
the concept of straight-through processing to be applied to proxy voting.
When choosing the network partner to deliver CREST connectivity, Syntegra
was an obvious choice."

The proxy voting market is a new area of business for SettleNET which
already serves more than 140 customers, including all the UK and Irish
registrar community, the majority of brokers as well as a number of
custodians and investment banks.

Kevin Covington, sector manager of Syntegra's wholesale financial
services division, said: "CREST is committed to creating new initiatives,
such as electronic proxy voting, for its members to augment its service.
This has opened up a new market for CREST connectivity and ISS' selection of
Syntegra confirms SettleNET's position as an unrivalled service."

For more information, please contact Adrian Rimmer (Syntegra) on (0) 1252 777029, or Abby Kyte (Write Image) on (0) 20 7959 5400.

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