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Intel Pumps Up WiMax With U.K. Venture

A wireless broadband network will begin in London and Manchester in 2007 and be in the top eight population centers by 2008.
LONDON — Intel Capital, the venture capital arm of chip giant Intel Corp. has formed a joint venture with internet service provider Pipex Communications plc, to create Pipex Wireless, a company chartered with providing Wimax wireless broadband services to enterprises and governments, including citywide wireless access networks.

Intel Capital is investing $25 million in the company while Pipex has transferred its U.K. rights to spectrum at 3.6-GHz to the joint-venture.

Intel and Pipex are the company's only shareholders, but it was not disclosed what sized stake each company holds.

The investors said the roll-out of the network would begin in London and Manchester in 2007, and target the top eight population centers by 2008. The company is investigating several locations for trial deployments this year. Pipex Wireless is expected to roll out wireless broadband services to the top 50 population centers in the U.K.

"This investment is part of Intel Capital's continued effort to deploy broadband access globally using competitive Wimax-based technology solutions." said Arvind Sodhani, Intel Capital president, in a statement.

“Intel Capital, through its relationship with Intel, plans to work closely with Pipex Wireless, advising them on trial deployments, partner introductions, and go-to-market activities," said William Kilmer, managing director of Intel Capital Europe, in the same statement.