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Olivetti SpA and Northern Telecom Ltd. have formed a joint venture to distribute and service Nortel telecommunications products in Italy. As part of the agreement, Nortel has acquired 49 percent of Sixtel SpA, a subsidiary of Olivetti. Olivetti is an equity partner in Omnitel Pronto Italia, Italy’s private cellular operator, which plans to use Global System for Mobile communications technology when it launches its network later this year.

Due to production increases, Nokia Telecommunications Corp. expanded its base station factory in Oulu, Finland, the company announced. The factory develops and manufactures base stations for Global System for Mobile communications-based cellular systems. Nokia said it plans to hire a few hundred people in the near future to support the growth in operations.

Triquanta Investments Ltd. said it has agreed to purchase Xanatel Communications Inc., a British Columbia, Canada-based company that is eligible to apply for personal communications services licenses in Canada. Xanatel is one of 18 companies or consortia that filed expressions of interest with Industry Canada, and therefore is allowed to bid for PCS licenses. Applications were due to the Canadian government by Sept. 15. Triquanta said it is planning to bid for a PCS license in British Columbia.

To further expand its digital cellular system in Nagoya, Central Japan Digital Phone has awarded L.M. Ericsson a contract valued at $90 million for infrastructure equipment. CDP’s network build-out to the Japanese Personal Digital Cellular standard, started commercial service in July 1994 and has added about 10,000 subscribers each month since, said Ericsson. The infrastructure order includes radio base stations and switching equipment.

Alltel Information Services Inc., formerly Systematics, said it is establishing its first European telecommunications support presence through providing an on-site account management team for Mercury One 2 One of London. Mercury operates a personal communications network in the United Kingdom and uses Alltel’s Virtuoso/PCN system software. The software enables in-house billing and customer care functions. Alltel said it plans to staff about 20 employees in the United Kingdom for the Mercury project.

Glenayre Technologies Inc. said it is beta testing its GL6880 Digital Wireless Telephone Line Extender, or WiLE, in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. WiLE is designed to meet remote subscribers’ needs, including rural businesses, farming and residential subscribers, as well as other private and government remote services. About the size of a shoe box, WiLE can be added to existing telephone facilities one line at a time, providing wireless line extensions up to 46.5 miles. WiLE provides high quality, full duplex voice and data operation on a single simplex frequency assignment between 380-512 MHz, Glenayre said. Initially, WiLE will be introduced in Canada, China, India, the United States, Indonesia, Brazil, Russia, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Mexico, the Philippines and the United Kingdom. The system is expected to be introduced in another 13 countries later.

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