KING Products Inc. 3150 Wharton Way
Mississauga, Ontario L4X 2C1
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE CONTACT:
Gino Trigiani, CFO
KING Products Inc.
KING Products Receives C$3 Million Order to Supply Hong Kong Telephone Company with Interactive Multimedia Pay Phones
TORONTO, Ontario, May 20, 1997 -- KING Products Inc. today announced it has been awarded an initial C$3 million (US$2.2 million) order from INFA Telecom Asia Limited of Hong Kong to produce state-of-the-art interactive multimedia public telephones for New World Telephone.
KING has delivered the first group of PowerPhone™ units to Hong Kong. The pay phones will be installed at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre, ready for use by dignitaries and the public during the July 1 Handover Ceremony marking the transfer of Hong Kong to China from Britain. Delivery of the entire PowerPhone™ order will be completed by the end of 1997.
"This is a major win for Canada and a strong endorsement of KINGís interactive media integration capabilities," said Peter Richards, President and Chief Executive Officer of KING. "The PowerPhone™ is a revolutionary product. It incorporates advanced computer and telephone technologies to provide the public with instant touch screen access to a wide range of information, electronic commerce transactions and telecommunications. This order signals the beginning of a significant new global market for public multimedia information and transaction-based products."
Besides the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre, the PowerPhone™ units will be installed at locations that include MTRC (Mass Transit Railway Corporation) stations and popular tourist spots in Hong Kong. The PowerPhone™ will serve as a vehicle to disseminate tourist information for the Hong Kong Tourist Association, as well as information on the new Convention Centre extension, the Trade Development Council and the Mass Transit Railway.
"The PowerPhone™ represents a new era of telecommunications in Hong Kong," said Peter Tsang, Chairman of INFA Telecom. "It is consistent with our overall strategy to provide our customers with greater choice in equipment and services and to continue our expansion of sales and services throughout China and the rest of Asia. We expect to deploy the PowerPhone™ throughout Hong Kong and subsequently into China over the course of the year. My hope is that in the next few years, the PowerPhone™ will be all over the Asia Pacific region."
KING, which is an interactive media integration company, is providing the engineering design and manufacturing of the PowerPhone™ in partnership with iMagic Infomedia Technology Limited of Hong Kong, which is providing product and application development integration.
KING has been working with INFA Telecom and iMagic since early 1996 to develop the PowerPhone™. Market trials on the first prototypes occurred in the fall of 1996. The PowerPhone™ will be distributed in North America by KING.
The wall-mounted pay phone is a combination of a telephone and a multimedia networked computer. It has a telephone handset, a flat panel colour touch screen display and a slot for smart cards and credit cards. It also comes with optional printer/fax attachments. Operating with an Intel Pentium processor, it is equipped with advanced computer network technologies such as frame relay, Ethernet and Internet Protocol, as well as MPEG card to run videos.
The PowerPhone™ is able to generate data, graphics and video, and work off a telephone and a computer network simultaneously. It can handle local and international calls, show commercials and provide users with on-screen access to a wide range of information including real-time weather forecasts, financial news, movie times and a telephone directory. It can also provide electronic commerce transactions such as booking hotel rooms and airline tickets, and authorizing credit cards.
The PowerPhone™ is capable of automatically dialling a number displayed, simply with a touch of the screen. Information available on the PowerPhone™ can be provided in real-time and can be updated remotely because the pay phone is connected to a data network. The network also enables the telephone company to monitor all PowerPhone™ units for any problems.
In addition, the PowerPhone™ allows for connection to the Internet for such purposes as retrieving and sending e-mail with the use of a touch-screen keyboard. New World Telephone plans to phase in the Internet functions over time.
KINGís partnership with INFA Telecom led to the formation of a joint venture in September 1996. Under the name of INFA KING Limited, the joint venture will develop and manufacture new interactive media products, as well as distribute KINGís MIKO multimedia products and LINK directories and sign systems throughout Asia.
INFA Telecom Asia Limited is a provider and integrator of telecommunications systems, products and services in Hong Kong, China and Macau. With more than 20 years of experience in the telecom sector, INFA Telecomís installation base spans more than 70 cities in China. In Hong Kong, INFA Telecom products claim more than 70 per cent market share in the financial sector. It has entered into a number of joint ventures with Hong Kongís leading property investment company New World Development, forming New World Paging in 1990, New World Telephone in 1992 and New World PCS in 1995.
New World Telephone
New World Telephone provides a full range of corporate and personal communications services, wireline and wireless services as well as local and international services. It is the first company in Hong Kong to provide public multimedia service with the PowerPhone™.
iMagic Infomedia Technology Limited is an innovative leader in providing new media products, services and turnkey solutions. iMagicís mission is to merge technology with creativity to deliver customized web enabled communication strategies to corporations in Hong Kong, China and the Asia Pacific region.
KING Products Inc., an interactive media integration company, designs, manufactures and markets two product lines, MIKO and LINK. The MIKO product line consists of interactive terminals that allow public access to information, communications and electronic commerce transactions. The LINK product line consists of interactive and fixed directories as well as signs for buildings. MIKO and LINK products are located in public spaces such as malls, hotels, airports and office buildings. KING also develops customized multimedia integrated solutions for industry partners.
KING is based in Toronto, Canada, with offices in New York and Hong Kong. The company is traded on the Canadian Dealing Network under the symbol "KINK."
*The PowerPhone is a registered trademark of iMagic Infomedia Technology Limited.