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Spyglass Buys Navitel For $11.3 Million

In a bid to broaden its Windows CE line, Internet software maker Spyglass Inc. Thursday acquired privately-held Navitel Communications for $11.3 million in stock.

Spyglass makes Internet software for a variety of non-PC devices, including set-top boxes. Navitel has developed several Windows CE-based applications that give mobile telephones Internet capabilities.

Spyglass will issue 1.25 million shares of stock to pay for the deal, which is expected to close within the next two weeks.

Navitel developed the software used in Microsoft's Hermes Web-enabled telephone that runs on Windows CE. That device was recently previewed at CeBIT '99.

"Navitel's extensive experience in providing Windows CE-based solutions for devices in a natural extension of Spyglass' current solutions practice for Windows CE. With the Navitel acquisition, Spyglass will gain significant expertise in developing Internet applications running on the Windows CE platform," said Doug Colbeth, Spyglass' president and chief executive officer.

Colbeth said the acquisition will help Spyglass capitalize on the growing market for Windows CE-based devices.

"Spyglass continues to strengthen its ability to leverage key Internet-enabling technologies and Internet device platforms to help our customers deliver Web-enabled products and services. The Navitel acquisition will complete another milestone in our strategy of offering comprehensive multi-platform solutions to our customers...," he said.

On Wednesday, Spyglass reached a $20 million deal with Microsoft to put its Internet technology on devices running Microsoft's Windows CE operating system.

Spyglass will license technology and provide services to Microsoft that will help accelerate the development and deployment of Windows CE-based products. The company will also work with Microsoft to speed the development of applications that will run on the hand-held devices.