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 WESTBOROUGH, Mass., July 26 /PR Newswire/-- In an effort to help New England businesses improve their international competitiveness, Massachusetts Electric, Granite State Electric subsidiaries of the New England Electric System (NYSE: NES) and Massport have joined forces to send representatives from six small- to mid-sized companies to the CeBit Computer Trade Show in Hanover, Germany from March 16-23, 1994.
 Representatives from the chosen businesses will tap into marketing networks to help establish overseas clientele. The annual trade show, the world's largest, demonstrates the newest technology in office equipment as well as satellite businesses, computer innovations and new product markets. CeBit (World Center for Bureau and Information Technology) held its first trade event in 1947, and since has grown into an event that showcases 2,100 companies. Attendance at CeBit has risen from 293,000 in 1985 to 648,000 in 1992.
 Massachusetts Electric will fund 50 percent of the estimated cost of an exhibition booth at the show for five of its customers. Granite State Electric will fund half of the cost for one of its customers. Represented companies will be chosen on a qualified first-come-first- serve basis. Massport will track the registration and report the winners to Massachusetts Electric.
 "This is an opportunity to help our customers gain a foothold in overseas markets," said Massachusetts Electric President John Dickson. "And to help familiarize our customers with the inner workings of CeBits we're sponsoring briefings on July 28."
 "The most difficult part of our role is to convince our small business customers, which have not ventured outside domestic borders, to take that daring first step and explore overseas opportunities," said Granite State Electric President Lydia M. Pastuszek. "We hope this could be the door opener our customers need to start them competing in an overseas market."
 Massport Executive Director Al Raine noted: "The most successful efforts we have had overseas were the result of working closely with creative private industry leaders. The willingness of Massachusetts Electric and Granite State Electric to assist local exports, is an example I hope many other New England industries will follow. Everybody benefits in this kind of relationship, the electric companies, the exporting companies and our economy."
 The Fifth International CeBit Forum will focus on all of Eastern Europe. Leading companies, politicians, scientists and representatives of the media from both the East and the West will examine the best possible conditions for economic development in the forum entitled "Business with Eastern Europe."
 The high-tech structure of the Hanover Exhibition Grounds will allow exhibitors to target specific groups for a presentation and will allow for systems to be installed and demonstrated "live". An on-site communications network enable exhibitors to send data, text and voice mail messages, and visual images anywhere in the world.
 CeBit workshops hosted by Massport will be held at 8:30 a.m. on July 28 at the World Trade Center in Boston and at 2 p.m. on July 28 at Bryant College, Smithfield, R.I. Registration materials and information will be available at the workshops.
 New England Electric System is a public utility holding company headquartered in Westborough, Mass. Subsidiaries include three retail electric companies -- Massachusetts Electric Company which serves 922,000 customers in 146 Massachusetts communities; The Narragansett Electric Company, which serves 321,000 customers in 27 Rhode Island communities; and Granite State Electric Company, which serves 34,000 customers in 21 New Hampshire communities.
 -0- 7/26/93
 /CONTACT: David Saad of New England Electric, 508-366-9011, ext. 3033/

CO: New England Electric Systems ST: Massachusetts IN: OIL SU:

JL-DD -- NE011 -- 5827 07/26/93 15:35 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Jul 26, 1993
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