News Release Details

Wi-LAN Bolsters Non-Line-of-Sight Capability with U.S. Acquisition

03/19/2001


UC Wireless Gives Wi-LAN Access to Proprietary VINE Technology and Expands International Customer Base 

Calgary, Canada and Santa Barbara, California
March 19, 2001

Wi-LAN Inc. (TSE: WIN), an innovator of high-speed wireless data communications technology and products, today took another step in fortifying its position in the global broadband wireless market by agreeing to purchase California-based UC Wireless, a privately-held fixed wireless access company. 

UC Wireless offers an established portfolio of wireless WAN products that are complementary to Wi-LAN's product lines, a customer base to extend Wi-LAN's international reach and significant resources in the areas of DSP, software and RF engineering. This strategic move will give Wi-LAN access to UC Wireless' proprietary Versatile Intelligent Network Environment (VINE) technology and their expertise in anypoint-to-multipoint network architectures, which are used to solve non-line-of-sight (NLOS) challenges. 

"The acquisition of UC Wireless is a key step to our growth strategy, " said Lee Warren, Business Development Vice President, Wi-LAN. "Along with our current product line and patented W-OFDM technology, this deal enhances Wi-LAN's ability to build-out enterprise and carrier networks by improving coverage and economics in non-line-of-sight situations."

Under the terms of the agreement, Wi-LAN will acquire significantly all of UC Wireless' assets and fully integrate its business operations into Wi-LAN. This will include its tangible assets, intellectual capital and proprietary VINE technology. 

"We are very proud of our VINE technology and wireless product offerings - we've built a great business over the years," said Hank Macchio, President and CEO, UC Wireless. "This agreement with Wi-LAN is welcomed as it will assist us in taking the next leap into broader development and distribution of our combined products and technologies. 

Closing is scheduled for April 10, 2001, and is subject to customary conditions including receipt of all requisite regulatory, shareholder and final board approvals. The purchase price will be satisfied by issuing approximately 1.7 million Wi-LAN shares. 

About VINE:
The VINE solution is a hybrid between point-to-multipoint and mesh network topologies that keeps the advantages of both. It facilitates a scalable fixed wireless network that can be deployed a node at a time with no need for additional equipment. For a new node to become part of an existing network, all that is needed is for it to be within radio frequency reach of any other node already in the network. Once part of the network, the new node can become the attaching point for other new nodes. This allows network planners to implement coverage quickly and cost-effectively - adding capacity when necessary. VINE technology incorporates early levels of Multiple Input, Multiple Output (MIMO) technology, which is a requirement for networks with multiple antennas. 

About UC Wireless:
UC Wireless designs, manufactures, integrates and markets broadband wireless Internet access and data transmission network products. The company's core competency is direct sequence spread spectrum communications, and its products operate in the 900 MHz, 2.4 GHz and 5.8 GHz license-exempt frequency bands. UC Wireless's proprietary VINE technology permits the implementation of long distance, medium subscriber density broadband Internet access networks a node-at-a-time. VINE networks have significantly lower costs than conventional cell-based networks. Detailed information on UC Wireless can be found at http://www.ucwireless.com.

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