Nokia acquires Rooftop Communications to boost its wireless IP bypass technology portfolio


(September 2, 1999) - Nokia today strengthened its capabilities in IP wireless bypass technology with an agreement to acquire Rooftop Communications Corporation for USD 57 million. The price will be paid partly in cash and partly in Nokia stock.

Rooftop Communications Corporation is a start-up company specializing in multipoint-to-multipoint radio systems that enable wireless broadband access to the Internet. The company currently employs 20 people and is based in Mountain View, California, in the U.S.

Rooftop introduced the industry's first multihop, multipoint wireless IP routers earlier this year. These wireless IP routers, called Internet RadiosTM, significantly simplify the issues of deploying a wireless broadband Internet access network. Rooftop's Internet Radios are a new class of product that allow ISPs, carriers and private enterprises to bypass the wired local loop with fast, always-on, wireless networks. The state-of the-art Internet Radios combine high performance digital radio frequency platforms with Rooftop's Internet Radio Operating System (IROS)TM, an extension of the industry standard IP protocol suite, designed to optimize wireless traffic performance, and manage the issues unique to wireless networks.

"This acquisition will give to us important additional know-how in this new area of wireless Internet access, which is an important alternative to other forms of Internet access," comments Dr. J.T. Bergqvist, Senior Vice President, Radio Access Systems, Nokia Telecommunications. " IP Wireless Bypass access solutions will be complementing Nokia's other IP solutions in order to provide Global IP Mobility. Rooftop Communications has significant experience in creating routing software for Internet Radios, which Nokia can leverage with its unique expertise in wireless technologies."

"Nokia and Rooftop share a common vision of wide spread wireless Internet access. Combining Rooftop's wireless data networking expertise, with Nokia's RF strength, powerful brand, and global sales channels, will accelerate making this exciting vision a reality," says Dave Beyer, CEO of Rooftop Communications Corporation.

Rooftop Communications Corporation was founded by a team of experts in IP-based, wireless Internet technology in 1995. Rooftop's wireless packet switched technology evolved from the same government research programs that funded development of the Internet, and its technical team has been working with academic and commercial experts to develop rapidly deployable, packet-switched wireless IP networks.

Nokia is paving the way to the mobile information society with its innovative products and solutions. Nokia is the leading mobile phone supplier and a leading supplier of mobile, fixed and IP networks including related services. It also supplies multimedia terminals and computer displays. In 1998, net sales totaled EUR 13.3 billion (USD 15.7 billion). Headquartered in Finland, Nokia is listed on the New York (NOK), Helsinki, Stockholm, London, Frankfurt and Paris stock exchanges and employs more than 51 000 people.