*****For immediate use October 23th, 2002
Hutchison Whampoa orders two million 3G video devices from NEC
- NEC agreement marks next milestone in rollout of services under the '3' brand -
(Tokyo and Hong Kong, 23 October 2002) Hutchison Whampoa Limited (Hutchison) today announced an agreement with NEC Corporation (NEC) to increase its November 2001 order of third generation (3G) video devices for the Hutchison's 3G companies worldwide from one million to two million NEC video devices. Hutchison and NEC have been working together since April 2001, and this order cements NEC's relationship with Hutchison as a key partner in the rollout of 3G services under the 3 brand world-wide. The value of the contract was not disclosed.
All the devices ordered from NEC are dual-mode, while the additional one million devices in this latest contract feature advanced messaging capabilities for both business and personal communication. Dual-mode devices enable consumers to benefit from rich multimedia services such as person-to-person video when accessing the 3G platform, but also allow the use of all 2Gservices when roaming beyond a 3G-enabled area.
In August 2001 Hutchison announced that NEC would be its preferred supplier of 3G devices, and this month, NEC began delivery of 1000 3G devices to Hutchison's 3G operations in the UK and Italy for use in the Hutchison friendly user trial. NEC is also supporting Hutchison's network infrastructure rollout in the UK, in line with the announcement in April 2001 by Hutchison 3G UK.
The new devices in this contract are the first of their kind for NEC and have been created following extensive consumer research. They offer a range of customer-friendly attributes such as computer-style keyboards, built-in cameras and significantly larger colour screens, which let customers experience 3G services to their fullest: mobile communication, Internet and audiovisual features all in one. The devices include a substantial memory of up to 64MB, built-in Java functions and purpose-built software.
Susumu Otani, Associate Senior Vice President and Executive General Manager of NEC's Mobile Terminal Business Unit, said: "The advent of 3G has produced many new business opportunities. As a result, the mobile handset has evolved into a highly advanced device incorporating many new features and technologies. NEC has become industry leader in the manufacture of sophisticated and user-friendly devices that simultaneously cater for specific needs and respond to consumer trends."
"NEC is providing comprehensive support for Hutchison's 3G service, and the creation of innovative mobile Internet services. We will accelerate the expansion of 3G by providing reliable and high quality devices backed by our extensive know-how and expertise in the mobile Internet field."
Canning Fok, Group Managing Director of The Hutchison Whampoa Group, said: "3G fuses two of the most powerful consumer technologies in history - the interactivity and depth of the Internet with the convenience and freedom of mobile telephony."
"We have just begun the first phase of our rollout of these exciting services. Our close relationship with NEC, combined with their considerable expertise in 3G technologies, is proving invaluable. 3 will offer consumers full-motion video over a wide selection of high quality devices."
About NEC Corporation
NEC Corporation (NASDAQ: NIPNY) (FTSE: 6701q.1) is one of the world's leading providers of Internet, broadband network and enterprise business solutions dedicated to meeting the specialized needs of its diverse and global base of customers. Ranked as one of the world's top patent-producing companies, NEC delivers tailored solutions in the key fields of computer, networking and electron devices, through its three market-focused, in-house companies: NEC Solutions, NEC Networks and NEC Electron Devices. NEC Corporation employs more than 140,000 people worldwide and had net sales of approximately US$39 billion in the fiscal year ended March 2002. For additional information, please visit the NEC home page at: http://www.nec.com
For further information about NEC's 3G activities, visit http://www.nec.co.jp/3g-mobile/
NEC has also begun supplying 3G infrastructure systems for Hutchison 3G UK and H3G Italy, together with Siemens A.G., as part of an agreement that reinforces NEC's strengths in the 3G field.
About Hutchison Whampoa
Hutchison Whampoa Limited (HWL), one of the largest companies listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, is the holding company of the Hutchison Whampoa Group of companies. As one of the earliest big "hongs" or trading companies in Hong Kong, Hutchison's history dates back to the 1800s. Today, HWL is a multinational conglomerate with businesses spanning 41 countries. Its flagship companies include Hutchison Port Holdings, Hutchison Telecom, Hutchison Whampoa Properties, A. S. Watson, and Cheung Kong Infrastructure. In 2001, HWL's consolidated revenue was US$11.415 billion (HK$89.038 billion).
With over 150,000 employees worldwide, Hutchison operates and invests in five core businesses: ports and related services; telecommunications; property and hotels; retail and manufacturing; and energy and infrastructure.
For more information, please visit www.hutchison-whampoa.com
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