Intel and Orascom ink WiMax venture

Intel is to form a major joint-venture company with Egypt’s Orascom Telecom in an aggressive bid to ramp up deployment of WiMax networks within the Middle East.

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By  Chris Whyatt Published  May 28, 2006

Intel is to form a major joint-venture company with Egypt’s Orascom Telecom in an aggressive bid to ramp up deployment of WiMax networks within the Middle East. Intel Capital, the chipmaker’s venture capital division, signed an agreement with the influential Egyptian operator last week. Rigidly committed to WiMax technology as a means of opening up low-cost broadband internet access, Intel said the joint venture would focus on working with governments and companies throughout the region to obtain suitable spectrum licenses for the deployment of WiMax services. “Intel Capital is a leader in promoting the deployment of low cost WiMax-based internet access” said Gordon Graylish, vice president of Sales & Marketing and general manager, EMEA, Intel. “This latest agreement builds on the foundation of existing Intel Capital investments to bring the benefits of low cost, high bandwidth internet access to consumers around the world,” added Graylish at the Intel Developer Forum in Cairo, last week. The deal is a key part of Intel’s Digital Transformation Initiative, a multi-year programme to expand the firm’s economic, educational and technology-related support throughout the Middle East, Turkey and Africa, Intel stressed. The creation of Orascom Telecom WiMax Limited is the first investment from the Intel Capital Middle East and Turkey Fund, announced last November. The collaboration between Intel Capital and Orascom will bring significant experience of network deployment, marketing and operations to the newly formed joint ventures, both companies said. “Orascom Telecom WiMax Limited is an exciting first step towards bringing the advantages and opportunity of internet connectivity to the people of the Middle East, and beyond, many of whom have never had such an opportunity before,” said Franco Grimaldi, CEO of Orascom Telecom WiMax Limited.

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