New Licensing Agreement with Petco

For Immediate Release

Wednesday, May 13, 1998

Contact: Duane Fahey

Visual Automation, Inc.


Grand Ledge, MI

Visual Automation, Inc. today announced the signing of a nationwide licensing agreement with Petco Animal Supplies, Inc., headquartered in San Diego, for using Secure Desktop security software in its retail stores.

Secure Desktop is a Windows 95 or Windows NT desktop shell replacement for the purpose of limiting access to only specific applications on the computer. Secure Desktop replaces the explorer desktop interface, providing an icon toolbar in its place. Each icon or group of icons may be password protected in addition to computer settings such as the control panel. This approach gives the administrator of the computer full discretion to secure the desktop.

Secure Desktop dramatically reduces the cost and complexity of implementation as well as the cost of ownership of "point of sale" or "publicly accessible" computers.

Simplification of Petco's operations is essential to managing their retail operations, according to a Petco spokesperson. By standardizing on software from Visual Automation, a global supplier, Petco will be able to reduce training requirements, engineering time and overall cost to the consumer.

PETCO operates approximately 460 premium pet food and supply stores in 33 states and the District of Columbia. Stores carry more than 10,000 items, including premium foods, vitamins, toys and other supplies for dogs, cats, birds, fish, rabbits and other domestic animals. PETCO's strategy is to be the leading national chain of community pet food and supply superstores by offering its customers a complete assortment of pet-related products at competitive prices, with superior levels of customer service at convenient locations. Founded in 1965, incorporated in the state of Delaware. PETCO has grown from a few stores in San Diego, California, to the second largest (in sales) retailer of pet food and supplies in the United States. Revenues for fiscal year 1997 are expected to be more than $700 million. The company is publicly held and its stock is traded on NASDAQ (Ticker: PETC).

Visual Automation, Inc. is a provider of security software products. Founded in 1994, the privately held company is recognized worldwide as a leader in Windows desktop security. Products include Secure Desktop, a Windows 3.1 and Windows 95/NT version; and iLock, a Windows 95 desktop security solution for home & classroom. Companies worldwide depend on Secure Desktop for their publicly accessible computers, including General Mills, Colgate-Palmolive, Nestle, Briggs & Stratton, E.I. Dupont, Siemens Medical, Genentech, Kraft, Ford, General Motors, 3M, Bayer, Nabisco, Kodak, and Quaker Oats.

For more information, contact Duane Fahey, Visual Automation, Inc., 11968 Sweetwater Drive - 2B, Grand Ledge, Michigan 48837. Phone:(517) 622-1850. Fax: (517) 622-1761. Contact Petco at (619) 453-7845, ext. 2086 or 2028.

Visit the Visual Automation home page at

Secure Desktop and iLock are trademarks of Visual Automation, Inc. Windows and Windows NT are registered trademarks of Microsoft Corporation. All other trademarks are property of their respective owners.