BUSINESS BRIEFS

Paging Network Inc. completed the purchase of the paging assets of California-based International Paging Corp. effective Sept. 1. PageNet said it will acquire 50,000 IPC paging customers in California, Colorado, Arizona, Nevada, Washington and Utah for a cash purchase price of $15 million. “We continue to experience rapid growth throughout all our operations. Adding the multistate paging frequency gained through this acquisition will allow us to grow in these markets,” according to Michael DiMarco, PageNet’s vice president of corporate development. This is the fifth acquisition the company has completed this year. PageNet claims a nationwide digital transmission network covering more than 90 percent of the U.S. population.

Palmer Wireless Inc. and GTE Mobile Communications Inc. announced signing definitive agreements for Palmer to purchase the outstanding stock interests in Georgia Metronet Inc. and Augusta Metronet Inc., both in GTE Mobilnet’s Southeast region, for a total purchase price of $160 million. The proposed acquisition “is consistent with our strategy of adding contiguous markets to our existing cellular clusters in Georgia and Alabama,” commented William J. Ryan, president and chief executive officer of Palmer Wireless. “We look forward to closing the transaction by year end.” Georgia Metronet holds 97.9 percent of Savannah Cellular L.P., which is licensed by the Federal Communications Commission to provide service in the Savannah, Ga., metropolitan statistical area. Augusta Metronet is the sole owner of an FCC license for the Augusta, Ga., MSA.

Digital Microwave Corp. said it sold more than 2 million shares of its common stock in an offering to foreign investors. Net proceeds from the offering totaled about $19.1 million, which will be used to repay debt, provide working capital and fund other general corporate expenses, the company reported. The shares involved in these transactions were not registered with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

Cellular One of New York and New Jersey has officially changed its corporate identity from McCaw Cellular Communications Inc. to AT&T Wireless Services, cellular division. AT&T noted that more than 60 percent of McCaw’s cellular customers have been allowed to choose their long-distance service provider-as required by the Justice Department in its consent to last year’s merger-clearing the way for advertising of the AT&T Wireless Services brand. The New York/New Jersey metropolitan area is the ninth market to make the transition. The other markets comprise all of Florida, most of California, Pittsburgh and Reno, Nev. All 105 former McCaw markets will make the transition by late November, the company said.

Metrocall Inc. said it has filed a registration statement with the Securities and Exchange Commission to issue 4 million primary common shares, plus shares to cover any over-allotments. Metrocall also filed with the SEC for a concurrent public offering of $110 million aggregate principal amount of senior subordinated notes due 2007, the company said. Lehman Brothers, Morgan Stanley & Co. Inc. and Wheat First Butcher Singer will manage both offerings. Toronto Dominion Securities Inc. also is managing the second offering.

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