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Nextel Confirms Wireless Deal with eDispatch

by Adam Peeler
Wednesday, February 23, 2000

Rumors of a deal between Nextel Communications and small cap (CDNX: EWD) became fact today as Nextel announced it will deploy eDispatch's Internet dispatching technology as part of its wireless repertoire.

Terms of the deal were not released, and officials at eDispatch were scrambling to put out their own press release. Trading of the company's stock was halted on the Canadian Venture Exchange this morning. At the time trading was halted, shares were up $C0.50 at $C13. Shares have traded as high as $C15 and as low as $C0.51 in the last year.

Nextel's press release said “The agreement with Wireless Data Inc. will allow Nextel customers, specifically those in field service, transportation and construction segments, to extend communication from the Internet out to the mobile worker in the field, increasing productivity with cost-effective communications.”

“This is probably the single greatest moment in our corporate history,” said eDispatch CEO Brian Ellis. “Nextel is the largest wireless fully integrated network operator and they have the bulk of transportation, field service and construction customers in America. We're ecstatic.”

In early February, representatives from Nextel all but confirmed a deal with eDispatch was imminent.

"We haven't announced anything with eDispatch but they're really the only one out there," said Nextel's investor relations manager Paul Blalock two weeks ago. "We're getting close to an announcement, there'll probably be something at the Wireless 2000 conference at the end of February."

Blalock wasn't available for comment as today's story was being posted.

"Yahoo, I mean this announcement is what we said it would be," said Research Capital analyst Rob Millham. "Nextel's announcement, the way I read this is sort of a primer for whatever is going to be happening at Wireless 2000. I wouldn't expect any dollar values would be released today."

eDispatch is one of two publicly traded companies, the other being Mobile Data Solutions Inc. (NASDAQ: MDSI), with dispatching software for use over Internet-based wireless networks that in effect turns a 'smart phone', or data phone, into a mobile computer terminal with an Internet portal for receiving orders.

In other words, the software combined with the Internet and communication products offers a more efficient system for companies to organize their workers in the field.

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