JOHN HANCOCK CORP. AND IN-FLIGHT PHONE CORP. CLOSE $35 MILLION IN FINANCING; TOTAL FINANCING PACKAGE WILL EXCEED $100M
OAKBROOK TERRACE, Ill., Aug. 6 /PRNewswire/ -- In-Flight Phone Corporation (IFPC), a wholly owned subsidiary of the Geoken Group Corporation (GGC), today announced that it has closed with John Hancock Mutual Life Insurance Company on a $35 million financing agreement. The exact terms were not disclosed. The financing package gives John Hancock a minority position in GGC, and provides for equipment financing of IFPC's digital FlightLink passenger communication and entertainment system. According to Randall E. Fischer, chief financial officer of In- Flight Phone Corporation, "We are pleased to have established this relationship with Hancock. This financing is part of a new capitalization program totaling more than $100 million. We expect to complete the remainder of our total financing package in the near future." John D. (Jack) Goeken, chairman and CEO of IFPC, said, "More than $70 million had been raised during IFPC's development stage. John Hancock is a welcome addition to IFPC as the company continues to install the FlightLink passenger communications and entertainment system aboard commercial and corporate aircraft."
IN-FLIGHT PHONE CORP.
In-Flight Phone Corp. is installing the all-digital FlightLink system at individual seat backs on USAir's fleet. A view screen is mounted on each seatback. To use FlightLink, a passenger removes the handset from beneath the armrest and selects services from the screen's graphical menu using buttons on the handset. Simple instructions appear on the screen to guide the user. The back of the handset has an alphanumeric key pad that can be used to enter messages onto the screen. In the United States, FlightLink service is sent from the aircraft to one of 90 ground receiving and transmitting stations blanketing the country. Coverage may be extended to any aircraft, anywhere in the world, through INMARSAT's L-Band satellite network, which can be accessed by In-Flight Phone International. FlightLink testing began in May 1992, aboard USAir Boeing 757 aircraft. Several months of testing demonstrated wide passenger acceptance and usage, and was the basis for USAir's decision to expand FlightLink to 412 aircraft. Goeken noted that the onboard video games have proven to be exceptionally popular, second only to telephone service. In addition, IFPC announced earlier this year that ABC Radio would program FlightLink On-The-Air, a 12-channel live radio network that will provide airline passengers with a variety of programming, including live sports, news, music and special events. In-Flight Phone Corporation and In-Flight Phone International are leaders in the worldwide air-to-ground telecommunications industry. In addition to its operations in the United States, licensing agreements have been signed to provide FlightLink services in Canada, Europe, the Middle East, South America, Thailand, Greenland, Iceland and Puerto Rico. IFPC was founded by telecommunications pioneer Jack Goeken, who also founded MCI, FTD Mercury, CML Satellite Corp. and Airfone. -0- 8/6/93 /EDITOR'S NOTE: Photo of FlightLink installed on a Boeing 757 is available immediately via Wieck Photo DataBase to any newspaper or media outlet with telephoto receiver or electronic darkroom that can accept overhead transmissions. Photo can also be retrieved via the Macintosh. Call 214-416-3686. There is no charge to the media for this service./ /CONTACT: Darren S. Leno, director of communications, In-Flight Phone Corporation and Goeken Group Corporation, 708-574-1237/
CO: In-Flight Phone Corp. ST: Illinois IN: TLS LEI SU: PDT
KL -- CL013 -- 0304 08/06/93 12:09 EDT
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|Date:||Aug 6, 1993|
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