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Washington Post Staff Writer
Monday, November 20, 2000; Page E01

Internos Files Chapter 11

Plans for Internos Corp. of Dulles to one day go public have been put on hold after the Dulles-based online provider of business-to-business solutions filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection as it attempts to reorganize its finances.

Internos, founded in 1996 by home builder Donald Hyde, provided business solutions for the commercial and residential construction, railroad and toy industries. Internos created BuilderSupplyNet.com, RailNet-USA.com and ToyNetwork.com in hopes of linking the bricks-and-clicks of those industries as a working network of communities.

The filing, made Nov. 9 in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Alexandria, listed assets and liabilities each as $1,000,001 to $10 million. The company did not say why it could not pay its debts. Hyde, a former chief executive of Internos, was listed as being owed $747,685, an amount Internos claimed in the filing was in dispute. The largest unsecured creditor was KSK Communications, which was owed more than $1.4 million, court documents showed.

The shakeout in the dot-com sector that began in the spring has made the marketing and selling of Internet-based companies a challenge.

"Financial markets are very fickle, and investors, like the fashion industry, look for trends, and when the trend is over they look at the next best thing," Hyde said on Saturday. "We were on track to meet our projections on the IPO process, but the markets were closed to us as to many other companies."

"Like many dot-coms," he said, "we were programmed to have deficits for a long time."

Internos had entered into several partnerships in the past six months.

Broadband Provider Tops Growth List

Primus Telecommunications was the fastest-growing technology company in the United States last year, according to Deloitte & Touche.

The national accounting firm annually ranks the "Fast 500" technology companies based on five-year revenue growth. Primus, a McLean-based broadband provider, had a five-year revenue growth rate of 71,257 percent.

The other local company in the top 10 was Rockville-based Visual Networks, an e-commerce software company that had a five-year growth rate of 36,588 percent.

Both firms have seen their growth curve level off significantly this year, however. Visual Networks, beset by a bad case of acquisition indigestion, saw its revenue decline in the third quarter. Both companies' stocks are trading near their all-time lows.

Altogether, 37 companies from Virginia and 16 from Maryland were in the Fast 500. None were in the the District.

Va. Computer Maker Raises $15 Million

Xybernaut Corp., a Fairfax maker of wearable computers, sold $15 million of stock on Wednesday for $2.75 a share, below its 52-week low price, according to a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The shares traded as high as $29.97 on March 2.

The company also included 2.6 million four-year warrants to buy a share of Xybernaut at $4.33. As an added incentive to the institutions that participated in the private placement, the company pledged to use its "best efforts" to register the stock for sale on the open market within 30 days.

Xybernaut shares rose 16 cents to $3.19 at Friday's close.

On Tap This Week

* The release of earnings reports has begun to slow, with just two announcements expected this week from local companies: Washington Homes Inc. and U.S. Office Products Co.

© 2000 The Washington Post Company