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Hewlett-Packard and Rainbow's Joint Venture Partner, ViaSpace Technologies, Announce Strategic Alliance to Bring Innovative Technologies to Market.

Business Editors

EDMONTON, Alberta & PASADENA, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Aug. 16, 2000

Next Generation Incubator Offers Lower Risk, Advanced Stage

Technology Portfolio

The Rainbow Group of Companies Inc. (CDNX:RBP) announced today that Hewlett-Packard Company (NYSE:HWP) has entered into a strategic alliance with ViaSpace Technologies LLC. Hewlett-Packard is providing $10 million of financing to ViaSpace in the form of a convertible debt arrangement to assist ViaSpace in funding its technology, infrastructure and other incubation costs associated with the commercialization of its innovative new technologies.

Rainbow Group of Companies and ViaSpace are Joint Venture partners in QWIP Technologies LLC (QWIPTECH), incorporated in December 1998. QWIPTECH was formed to develop, commercialize, manufacture, and market the Quantum Well Infrared Photo detector (QWIP). The Company holds the exclusive worldwide license (except for medical diagnostic applications) to manufacture and sell (bound and quasi bound) QWIPs. The underlying technology was developed over the last 10 years at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory with over $15 million US in government funding. QWIPTECH is currently in early production of its first product, scheduled to be commercially available in the Third Quarter of 2000.

"Hewlett-Packard's financial commitment to ViaSpace confirms the growing demand for technology commercialization led by a strong management team with business process expertise," said ViaSpace CEO, Dr. Carl Kukkonen. "Hewlett-Packard is our preferred provider for technology, computing platforms and services, and it's gratifying to receive this evidence of Hewlett-Packard's belief in our management team and vision," Dr. Kukkonen added.

"ViaSpace is well positioned to identify innovative technologies to be commercialized for market with its strategic and geographic ties to Caltech and NASA, as well as its strong management team and Board of Directors," said Craig White, president of HP Credit Corporation. "This is a tremendous opportunity for both of our organizations, since we each have a vested interest in transforming innovative, proven technologies into commercial products," Mr. White added.

Mark Sirangelo, CEO of QWIPTECH, stated, "The investment in ViaSpace by Hewlett-Packard is a strong endorsement of Rainbow's Joint Venture with ViaSpace in QWIP Technologies LLC. Having Hewlett-Packard as an investor will enhance our ability to establish QWIP."

About Hewlett-Packard Company

Hewlett-Packard Company, a leading global provider of computing and imaging solutions and services for business and home, is focused on capitalizing on the opportunities of the Internet and the proliferation of electronic services. Hewlett-Packard has 85,400 employees worldwide, and had total revenue from continuing operations of $42.4 billion in its 1999 fiscal year. Information about Hewlett-Packard and its products can be found on the World Wide Web at http://www.hp.com.

About ViaSpace Technologies

ViaSpace Technologies LLC is a Pasadena, California area technology commercialization company that specializes in bringing lower risk, advanced stage technologies into the commercial marketplace. ViaSpace, a spin-off of the NASA/Caltech Jet Propulsion Laboratory, currently operates three subsidiaries: QWIP Technologies LLC, SpectraSensors, Inc., and ViaChange.com.

About Rainbow Group of Companies Inc.

Rainbow is a technology company which trades on the Canadian Venture Exchange (CDNX:RBP). It is currently focused, through QWIPTECH, on the manufacturing and marketing of thermo imaging detectors, sensors, and systems. Rainbow has a 40% interest in QWIPTECH, with the remaining 60% interest owned by ViaSpace Technologies LLC. Additional information can be found at: http://www.rbpgroup.com and/or http://www.qwip.com.

The Canadian Venture Exchange has not reviewed and does not accept responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this news release.

This press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Exchange Act of 1934, as amended by Public Law 104-67 and is subject to safe harbor created by these sections. Actual results and performance of achievements could differ materially from those anticipated in such forward-looking statements, which involve numerous risks and uncertainties. Past performance is not necessarily indicative of future results.
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Publication:Business Wire
Date:Aug 16, 2000
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