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ERG Motorola Alliance Wins Rome Metrebus Integrated Smart Card Fare Collection Project.

ROME--(BUSINESS WIRE)--June 28, 1999--

The Board of Directors of ATAC, the organization administering public transport in Rome, has ratified the award of the Metrebus Integrated Smart Card Fare Collection Project to the ERG Motorola Alliance. The decision follows an announcement on 23 April 1999 that the ATAC technical committee had provisionally awarded the project to the ERG Motorola Alliance.

Under the nine year contract, the Alliance will design, supply and operate an integrated smart card fare collection system for the bus, rail and tram networks in Rome and the surrounding region of Lazio. The Alliance will supply approximately 84 billion lira (US$46 million) of equipment and software which will form the initial infrastructure for the project.

The revenue of the system in 2000 is forecasted to be approximately 550 billion lira (US$351 million) meaning that the gross revenue to be collected over the initial nine year contract term for the ERG Motorola Alliance will be approximately 5.7 trillion lira (US$3.8 billion). Out of that revenue the Alliance will retain approximately 455 billion lira (US$280 million) as its gross fee, representing 7.88% of the total fare collection revenue.

Under the contract, the Alliance will supply and install approximately 9,700 validators capable of reading paper and contactless or combi smart card technology in the bus fleet, light rail and rail network in and around Rome, and the bus fleet and rail network in Lazio. The bus fleet totals 5,000 and there are three light rail lines and 76 rail stations. In addition, 200 portable smart card readers will be supplied for inspectors and a network of 30 bus depot computer systems and 76 rail station computers will be linked via a complete communication network to a central clearing and processing computer system.

The Alliance will be responsible for the management and maintenance of the automated fare collection system for a nine-year operating term with a further five-year option. The Alliance will also create and operate a monitoring and call-handling center and be responsible for security, ticket/card sales, data collection, smart card issuing and a reporting system.

Passengers will be able to purchase single ride paper tickets and purchase or reload multi-journey or season smart cards tickets at 4,000 ticket distribution points located at the Tabaccai and Giornalai (tobacconists and newsagents) stores across Rome and Lazio.

The system will initially have 300,000 - 500,000 contactless or combi smart cards issued. This number is expected to increase to over one million within 12 months. The project will see a small sub-set of the system installed within eight months, full implementation in Rome in 12 months and full system completion within 24 months.

The system to be used in Rome and Lazio will be based on ERG's successful Hong Kong central clearing and smart card management system, the same system selected for use by transit authorities in the United Kingdom, Berlin, Singapore and San Francisco. The smart card base will be managed and controlled by the ERG Motorola Alliance and its use will be extended outside transit to other multipurpose applications. The system will use Motorola's M-Smart Venus(TM) card that combines multi-applications on a single chip.

Commenting on the award of the contract to the ERG Motorola Alliance, Roberto Cavalieri, General Director of ATAC said: "We are pleased to be able to award this important contract, which is one of the largest infrastructure projects ever awarded in Rome, to the ERG Motorola Alliance and we welcome their decision to involve local Italian companies in the Project. The selection followed an extensive review of other systems available and a thorough technical assessment during the tender process."

Chief Executive of ERG, Peter Fogarty, welcomed the ratification of the contract award and said: "The system to be implemented in Rome will be the most advanced in the world. It will involve total outsourcing and combi smart cards, and make travel easier for the travelling public in Rome. It is an honour for us to be selected as the operator for one of Europe's most important cities."

Francois Dutray, vice president and general manager Motorola's Worldwide Smartcard Solutions Division said: "The Metrebus project is a prime example of our ability to meet the growing demand for innovative smart card solutions. The Alliance's expertise in operating smart card revenue management systems will provide our customer with the highest standard of excellence."

The ERG Motorola Alliance combines ERG's world-leading smart card and magnetic ticket-based integrated fare collection application expertise with Motorola's innovative M-Smart world of flexible smart card platform solutions, its systems integration and its operational management capabilities. Complementary strengths of the Alliance include complete wireless voice and data communication systems location tracking and management; revenue management expertise; systems integration and operating services capabilities; and electronic purse operating experience.

The ERG Group is a world leader in the development and supply of technologically advanced smart card systems and services; automated fare collection products and systems; and telecommunications products and services. ERG provides turnkey solutions to customers, from design and manufacture, to supply, installation, commissioning and ongoing service and maintenance. In 1997/98, Australian-based ERG's revenue totaled A$242 million. For more information on ERG, visit:

Motorola is a global leader in providing integrated communications solutions and embedded electronic solutions such as software-enhanced wireless telephone, two-way radio, messaging and satellite communications products and systems, as well as networking and Internet-access products, for consumers, network operators, and commercial, government and industrial customers. Sales in 1998 were $29.4 billion. For more information on Motorola, visit

Motorola and M-Smart Venus are trademarks of Motorola, Inc.
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Publication:Business Wire
Geographic Code:8AUST
Date:Jun 28, 1999
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