Compu-DAWN to Usher in Era of Sub-$300 PCs - Signs GlobalPC Acquisition Documents; GlobalPC Product to Target 'Unconnected' Population Shopping at Kmart, Mass Merchant Retailers.
Compu-DAWN (Nasdaq:ETVC), a provider of Internet-based e-commerce and communications products and services, today announced that it has entered into an agreement to acquire all tangible and intangible assets of Alameda, CA-based GlobalPC, Inc. for shares of common stock and common stock purchase warrants of Compu-DAWN. GlobalPC is co-developer and worldwide licensee of GEOS, a simplified, low cost operating system and integrated applications software suite. Upon closing, Compu-DAWN plans to offer licensing arrangements for both its operating system and hardware reference designs to national brand name consumer PC and consumer electronics manufacturers as early as the fourth quarter 1999.
Kmart, At Least One Other Mass Merchant Retailer to Sell Low-cost "GlobalPC"
In the fourth quarter 1999 - the holiday buying season - Compu-DAWN plans to introduce a GlobalPC(R)-branded $299 retail price personal computer to be sold initially through interactive end-cap displays at mass merchant retail stores in Minneapolis, MN, Indianapolis, IN and Tampa, FL. To date, Kmart and one other national name brand retailer have tentatively committed to offering the product during the roll out period in these markets; Compu-DAWN executives are currently in talks with additional mass merchant retailers to involve them in the fourth quarter 1999 introduction of the GlobalPC. An extensive broadcast and print advertising and public relations campaign is expected to promote the product in the roll out market areas. In the event of a successful rollout, the product is expected to be introduced nationally by the aforementioned retailers, as well as several additional retailers, in the first quarter of 2000.
The Rise of the Low Cost PC and the Internet Appliance
"The fastest growing segment of the PC market is the sub-$1,000 division," Compu-DAWN Chairman R. E. "Teddy" Turner explained. "And average unit prices are falling because consumers realize that there is no longer a need to buy an expensive cutting-edge machine. Today's less expensive PCs and appliances are sufficient for most tasks, especially connecting to the `Net' - the top reason consumers buy PCs."
Though Compu-DAWN is joining such operating system licensors as Microworkz.com, BE Incorporated(R) (licensor of BeOS) and Linux(R) in the "Windowless" trend, GEOS has a strong history - having been chosen in the past as the operating system for such manufacturers as Brother(R) and Nokia(R). "We're entering an era where Microsoft compatibility is needed, but Microsoft itself is not," added Rudy Theale, Vice Chairman of Compu-DAWN. "GlobalPC and GEOS have a history of innovation and have paved the way for other operating systems to make their mark in the low-priced PC and Internet appliance arena. We plan to make the GlobalPC the computer that everyone can use and afford, and we intend to make it available through the stores where America shops."
The GlobalPC- Simple, Inexpensive, Microsoft Word(R)- and Excel(R)-file compatible
Through its purchase of GlobalPC Inc., Compu-DAWN would inherit an experienced team of both hardware and software engineers to further enhance the GEOS operating system and its integrated suite of software applications. The development team will focus on four areas: ease-of-use, online service and Internet access, performance, and portal functionality.
- Expected street price: $299 for the GlobalPC system, $19.95 per month for full-service ISP; no minimum ISP commitment required
- Ease of use: four levels of usability, enabling the user to improve skills at their own pace (a beginner user interface as well as an interface with a common look and feel with which experienced PC users are comfortable)
- Microsoft Word and Excel file compatibility
- Internet browser, email and chat capabilities
- Word processor, database, graphics program and personal finance application
The standard Compu-DAWN GlobalPC personal computer will feature:
- x86 compatible processor
- 1.44MB floppy
- 1.2 - 2.0GB hard drive
- v.90 modem
- Integrated keyboard, speakers and mouse
The closing of the acquisition, which is scheduled to occur by the end of the third quarter 1999, is subject to a number of conditions. Final pricing and interactive end-cap display designs are currently being finalized.
Compu-DAWN provides Internet-based e-commerce and communications products and services to customers throughout North America. Compu-DAWN is based in Jacksonville, Florida, and can be accessed via the Web at www.compudawn.com.
GlobalPC, Inc., founded in April 1998, is the co-developer and worldwide licensee of GEOS, a user-friendly, powerful operating system and software suite. GlobalPC is based in Alameda, California.
Forward Looking Statements
Certain information contained in this announcement are "forward-looking statements." Compu-DAWN cautions readers that certain important factors may affect actual results and could cause such results to differ materially from any forward-looking statements which may be deemed to have been made in this announcement or which are otherwise made by or on behalf of Compu-DAWN. For this purpose, any statements contained in this announcement that are not statements of historical fact may be deemed to be forward-looking statements. Factors which may affect results include, but are not limited to, the Internet and Internet related technology and products, new technology developments, developments and regulation in the telecommunications industry, the risk of loss of management and personnel, the competitive environment within the Internet and telecommunications industries, the ability of Compu-DAWN to develop its infrastructure, the ability of Compu-DAWN to consummate the GlobalPC acquisition, the ability of Compu-DAWN to partner with a hardware manufacturer to produce the GlobalPC personal computer, the ability to enter into arrangements to sell products through the retail mass market channels, the ability of Compu-DAWN to raise additional capital which will be required in the near term to continue to develop and sustain business at current levels, the competence required and experience of management and economic conditions.
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|Date:||Aug 4, 1999|
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