Qualcomm Incorporated (Nasdaq: QCOM), pioneer and world leader of Code Division Multiple Access (CDMA) digital wireless technology; IDG Technology Venture (IDGVC), a US venture fund focusing on the information technology industry in China and TOM Online, a leading mobile Internet company in China, today announced the successful closing of a US$3.5 million investment in Sichuan Great Wall Software Group (Great Wall).
Based in Chengdu, Sichuan Province, Great Wall is a leading software developer and application provider for wireless phones, with experience in developing high-quality applications for Qualcomm's BREW® solution and Qualcomm's gpsOne™ position-location technology. Great Wall's highly innovative service portfolio includes City Online, a location based service that offers city maps, travel assistance for points of interest and yellow pages; Business Travel Companion, which offers an online travel package and hotel reservations using a mobile handset and Xin Gang Dating, a wireless dating and community service. Great Wall's leading edge development work has provided a compelling set of BREW applications for handset manufacturers such as TCL and Motorola. The expansion of gpsOne technology in China by Qualcomm and China Unicom will increase the number of innovative services and benefits offered to Great Wall's customers, enabling Great Wall to capture the opportunities that result from the deployment of next generation wireless networks.
"We are very pleased to join Qualcomm and IDGVC in this strategic investment and our participation in Great Wall's financing complements TOM Online's ongoing mission to be the leading mobile Internet company in China," said Mr. Wang Lei Lei, executive director and chief executive officer of TOM Online. "The investment in Great Wall will expand our product and service offerings by utilizing BREW-based applications, which can support more interactive and innovative content and products, enabling us to grow our market share while further solidifying our leadership in the wireless Internet market."
"Great Wall is poised to lead the market by leveraging the gpsOne solution and BREW applications," said Jing Wang, senior vice president of Qualcomm and chairman of Qualcomm Greater China. "Through our co-investment with TOM Online and IDGVC, we are pleased to collaborate with the high level of software developer talent in China, as this resource will allow Great Wall to further enhance and increase the range of BREW-based services and applications it offers its customers."
"We are very pleased to have TOM Online, Qualcomm and IDGVC as our investors and partners," said Mr. Xin Liu, chief executive officer of Great Wall Software. "The investment by TOM Online and Qualcomm will not only provide us with the capital to fund our daily operation and expand our R&D capability but also bring us an unsurpassed distribution network. The BREW solution has proven to be a key component in bringing high quality content to China."
Qualcomm's BREW system provides products and services that connect the mobile marketplace value chain, which includes application developers, publishers, content providers, device manufacturers, operators and consumers.
Publishers and developers worldwide are generating revenue from BREW-based applications and content, and 27 manufacturers have offered more than 145 BREW-enabled device models to consumers. BREW is successfully enabling the commercial wireless data services of many very successful operators, including Verizon Wireless, ALLTEL, Cellular One, Cellular South, MetroPCS, Midwest Wireless and U.S. Cellular in the United States, China Unicom, KDDI in Japan, KTF in South Korea, Hutch in Thailand, Telstra in Australia, VIVO in Brazil, BellSouth Chile, BellSouth Colombia, BellSouth Ecuador, BellSouth Guatemala, BellSouth Nicaragua, BellSouth Panama, BellSouth Perú, Telefónica Móviles in Peru, Movicom in Argentina, Movicom in Uruguay, Telcel and Movilnet in Venezuela, Verizon Dominican Republic, Verizon Wireless Puerto Rico, Pelephone in Israel and Zapp Mobile in Romania.
TOM Online Inc. (Hong Kong GEM: 8282, Nasdaq: TOMO) is a leading mobile Internet company in China providing value-added multimedia products and services. A premier online brand in China targeting the young and trendy demographic, the company's primary business activities include wireless Internet services, online advertising. The company offers an array of services such as SMS, MMS, WAP, wireless interactive voice response services, content channels, search and classified information, free and fee-based advanced email and online games. As of June 30, 2003, TOM Online is the only portal in China that enjoyed a top three ranking in every wireless Internet service segment.
TOM Online is a subsidiary of TOM Group Limited ("TOM Group"), one of the leading Chinese language media groups in the Greater China region. TOM Group's diverse operations span five media sectors: the Internet (through TOM Online Inc.), outdoor (through TOM Outdoor Media Group), publishing, sports and TV & entertainment.
IDGVC has the distinction of being one of the first American venture capital funds to enter into the Chinese market. In addition to providing venture capital, IDGVC offers an array of value-added services and in-depth support to entrepreneurs in China's high-tech industries. Founded in 1992 by International Data Group (IDG), a leading worldwide provider of information technology services, IDGVC has been focusing its investment on such industries as the Internet, information services, software, telecommunications, networking technology and biotechnology.
To date, IDGVC has invested more than $100 million in China's burgeoning entrepreneurial community. One of IDGVC's greatest strengths is its close relationship with local entrepreneurs. It has a proven track record of finding and working with individuals capable of building world-class technology companies. IDGVC's venture capital operation is headquartered in Beijing, with branch offices in Shanghai, Guangzhou, and Shenzhen in China and in Boston and San Jose in the United States.
Qualcomm Incorporated (www.qualcomm.com) is a leader in developing and delivering innovative digital wireless communications products and services based on the Company's CDMA digital technology. Headquartered in San Diego, Calif., Qualcomm is included in the S&P 500 Index and is a 2003 FORTUNE 500® company traded on The NASDAQ Stock Market® under the ticker symbol QCOM.
Except for the historical information contained herein, this news release contains forward-looking statements that are subject to risks and uncertainties, including the Company's ability to successfully design, develop the product discussed, the extent and speed to which such products are accepted in the market, change in economic conditions of the various markets the Company serves, as well as the other risks detailed from time to time in the Company's SEC reports, including the report on Form 10-K for the year ended September 28, 2003, and most recent Form 10-Q.