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Intel, Pacific Century Seal Partnership

US microchip giant Intel Corp. and Hong Kong-based Pacific Century Group (PCG) have further sealed their partnership to deploy broadband Internet services in Asia.

Intel has agreed to invest HK$389 million (US$50 million) in Hong Kong listed Tricom Holdings Limited, currently being acquired by PCG and soon to be renamed Pacific Century CyberWorks Limited.

Moreover, both companies will allow their joint venture, Pacific Convergence Corporation (PCC), to be acquired by Pacific Century CyberWorks.

As a result of both moves, Intel will have a 13 percent stake in CyberWorks.

"The injection of PCC into Pacific Century CyberWorks is a logical step," said Alex Arena, managing director of Pacific Century CyberWorks.

"Both PCC and Pacific Century CyberWorks will benefit from the potential synergies of developing the broadband service business through one company," added Arena. "In addition, Intel's technology expertise and Internet solutions are expected to provide strategic value to our service."

In addition to the acquisition moves, Intel will supply comprehensive set-top and server-based solutions using the Intel architecture to deliver the combined broadcast and Internet services generated by PCC.

"Our goal with these agreements is to speed the deployment of broadband Internet-based services to Asia," said Claude Leglise, vice president and general manager of Intel's Home Products Group. "We also are pleased that PCC has chosen Intel to be the supplier for this new set-top infrastructure."

The PCC joint venture was formed by Intel and PCG in March 1998 to deliver broadband data services to the region using an integrated system of advanced telecommunications networks and related technologies.

PCG is a private company owned by Richard Li, son of Hong Kong property magnate Li Ka Shing. Li launched STAR TV in 1990, a pan-Asian satellite and cable business now owned by Rupert Murdoch, which today reaches over 110 million households.

Earlier this year, PCG entered an agreement with the Hong Kong government to build the HK$13 billion Cyberport complex.



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