News Release Details

Wi-LAN Signs U.S. $45.5 Million Agreement with Europe's SkyberNet to Develop a Wireless Broadband Access

07/20/2000


Five-year Supply Agreement for Wi-LAN Products to Converge Data, Voice, and Video for Networks in the Netherlands, Belgium, and Luxembourg

Calgary, Alberta
July 20, 2000

Wi-LAN Inc. (TSE:WIN), an innovator of high-speed wireless data/Internet communications, announced the signing of a five-year supply and distribution agreement with SkyberNet International BV, a company created to develop, deploy and operate broadband wireless communication services, subject to certain mutual terms and conditions. Totaling US$45.5 million, the agreement will enable SkyberNet to build high-speed wireless broadband networks in the Netherlands, Belgium and Luxembourg. This agreement will facilitate SkyberNet's development of a single network connection that will provide both high-speed Internet and toll-quality voice over IP services.

Under terms of the 43-month supply agreement, Wi-LAN will initially supply SkyberNet with its 4.5 megabit per second (Mbps) and 12 Mbps 2.4GHz Hopper Plus (tm) wireless Ethernet bridges. SkyberNet will then incorporate products from Wi-LAN's I.WiLL(tm) product line, based on its Wideband-Orthogonal Frequency Division Multiplexing (W-OFDM) technology. Wi-LAN anticipates that the value of the agreement will see total revenues of US$45.5 million by 2004, with US$6 million in the first 18 months of the contract.

"SkyberNet has a strong business plan and is moving quickly to address a market need in the Benelux countries," says Bill Hews, president and COO of Wi-LAN. "We are pleased that SkyberNet has selected Wi-LAN solutions, and see these contracts as strong additions to our growing business in Europe." 

In addition to the supply agreement, the two companies have signed a distribution agreement. Under terms of the distribution agreement, SkyberNet gains licensing rights to sell Wi-LAN products for use in other wireless networks in the unlicensed 2.4 GHz frequency in the Netherlands, Belgium and Luxembourg. As a Wi-LAN Gold Certified Partner, SkyberNet will supply Wi-LAN's remote units to both re-sellers as well as end-users in the Netherlands, Belgium and Luxembourg. 

With Wi-LAN's products, SkyberNet will offer 'last mile' high-speed Internet and toll-quality voice over IP services over a single network connection at a competitive price, creating significant benefits for business customers. The development of this network using wireless technology will enable a short deployment period to create a high-speed wireless point-to-multipoint system that is scaleable and easily expandable at a low investment per line. SkyberNet's plans include offering not only high-speed Internet access, but also virtual private networks, interconnecting data and/or voice networks for its customers.

"Wi-LAN has developed an extremely cost-effective alternative to fiber. As we considered the build-out of our networks, we selected Wi-LAN as our partner given the performance of their high-speed wireless data products coupled with their experience in developing wireless access networks," said Erik Jennes, SkyberNet CEO. "We strongly believe that Wi-LAN products and technology will help us to provide our customers the next generation in broadband wireless access."

About SkyberNet International BV:
SkyberNet International BV is an Internet and communications services company with its headquarters in the Netherlands. The Company was established to develop, deploy and operate broadband communications services that provide "First Mile" high speed Internet and toll quality voice over IP services over a single network connection. This service provides integration of voice and data in the "Local Loop" and creates significant economic benefits for business customers. SkyberNet is financially backed by Gilde IT Fund, CommVest and Holland Venture.Detailed information can be found at http://www.skybernet.nl.

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