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AIRGATE TO BID IN C BLOCK

Despite intensifying doubt regarding the outlook for entrepreneurial block personal communications services auctions, AirGate LLC of Atlanta announced it intends to bid for licenses in the C block.

AirGate is a start-up venture formed to enter the PCS market, through a unit called AirLink, and is supported by BCE Mobile Communications Inc. and Bell Canada International Inc., both subsidiaries of Montreal-based BCE Inc. Specifically, the two Canadian entites have acquired an option to pruchase indirect equity in AirLink.

No executives have been named in the new commpany, but AirGate spokeswoman Shelly Spencer noted the group is comprised of seasoned players from the U.S. paging and cellular industries ad from PCS business in the United Kingdon. This is “possibly one of the strongest groups of experienced wireless talent taking part in the entrepreneurs’ block auctions,” she added.

Weill, Peck & Greer Venture Partners of San Francisco provided early stage financing for AirGate.

As a result of competitive and regulatory activities surrounding the Federal communications Commission auctions, AirGate said it will release only limited information until the auctions are concluded.

Ericsson nets PCS contract

L.M. Ericsson has inked a contract to expand Mercury One-2-One’s personal communications services network to national coverage in the United Kingdom. Ericsson values the deal at $375 million.

The Stockholm-based equipment giant is prime contractor and plans to design and build the network, including site acquisition, civil works, switching, transmission and integration into the existing network, stated Ericsson. Further, the company has committed plans to “progressively nand over complete operating regions ensuring that Mercury One-2-One achieves national coverage by the end of 1997.”

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