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Tuesday 11th December 2001

France Telecom and Finmeccanica Sell STM Stock

France Telecom and Finmeccanica are to reduce its stake in ST Microelectronics through the sale of 60 million common shares and exchangeable bonds. The deal will cut the companies current 44% stake in the semiconductor company jointly held with French energy company Ariva by 7%.

France Telecom's gross proceeds from the share sale will total 1.157 billion euros, bringing its total gross proceeds from the share and notes offering to 2.481 billion euros. Finmeccanica will earn 988 million euros from the sale. Both companies have said that they would use the proceeds from the sale to cut debt and fund core business growth.

ST shares closed down 8.5% after the share and exchangeable notes sale was announced yesterday.


New Wireless Device From APRIVA

APRIVA have launched a new mobile application device which includes a barcode scanner, magnetic card reader and Smart Card reader. The APRIVA x57, which connects to the RIM 857 / 957 Wireless Handheld devices, is offered as a multi-use all-in-one handheld unit and claims to be able to run an unlimited number of wireless applications.

APRIVA CEO Kevin Hickey said the new device was ideal for service representatives repairing appliances in homes who want to both track inventory and accept credit card transactions, or for any business that can benefit with instant credit card transactions and inventory tracking.


CVS to Resell Smart Card Healthcare Application

Lifestream Technologies has secured a deal to allow the US' second biggest drug chain CVS Corporation to distribute its Smart Card-enabled Lifestream Personal Cholesterol Monitor at 4100 of its retail locations nationwide.

Equipped with an embedded Smart Card reader, the Lifestream Cholesterol Monitor allows users to save past results and share them with doctors and pharmacists. The product allows up to 200 test results to be downloaded onto the 'Data Concern' Personal Health Smart Card that is shipped with the unit.


Infineon Expands ADSL Chip Range

Infineon has added a data-only ADSL Transceiver to its GEMINAX POTS/ADSL chipset family. Targeted at access systems with ATU-C (ADSL Transceiver Unit- Central Office) functionality, the GEMINAX family now includes both a Data-Only version and an Integrated Voice/Data (IVD) version.

Infineon's Christian Wolff said: "By expanding the GEMINAX family we now offer our customers a single point of contact for all their ADSL Physical Layer Transceiver needs. When added to the existing ADSL, G.shdsl (symmetric DSL), and VDSL solutions it reinforces Infineon's leading position as a broad line supplier of innovative DSL chips for access networks."


ICC Win UK Export Award

ICC Solutions have been named the UK's 'Corporate Exporter of the Year' at a recent event in London. The company, which specialises in chip card testing products, received the award at an HSBC-sponsored event which rewards British companies achievements in overseas markets.

Commenting on their decision, the judges said that "significant profit tied with a clear vision gave ICC Solutions an outstanding rate of growth." The success was largely attributed to a Global Marketing Plan, which focussed on "long term frames, solid objectives and clear strategies to achieve desired financial goals."

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