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April 25, 1995

ESCOM TO RESUME PRODUCTION OF COMMODORE AMIGA, C64

By CBR Staff Writer

Escom AG, Heppenheim has finally put to rest the Commodore International Ltd liquidation saga, announcing yesterday that it had acquired the rights to Commodore and Amiga computer patents in an auction in New York. The deal, for a reported $10m, includes all rights to Commodore and Amiga technology, intellectual property, brand names and patents, and the German plans to exploit the Amiga’s multimedia technology. It says it plans to resume production of the Commodore 64 model for eastern Europe, and will produce and distribute the Amiga 4000, 1200 and 600. It is also working on an Amiga multimedia board for Windows personal computers, and plans to develop Amiga set-top boxes for use in interactive television. It has licensed Tianjin Family-Used Multimedia Co Ltd of China to market and produce Amiga-based computers and is in talks with distributors in the US and Asia about further licensing agreements for Commodore and Amiga products. Escom has shown PowerPC-based prototypes at trade shows, rais ing the possibility that successors to the 68000-based Amiga could follow the Macintosh to the PowerPC; there are already Amiga emulators for the Mac. Escom is 25%-owned by mail order giant Quelle AG and 10%-owned by Siemens Nixdorf Informationssysteme AG, which makes 80% to 90% of the personal computers bearing the Escom brand name. In the UK, it has a plant in Irvine, Scotland and has a couple of dozen company stores, soon to expand to over 250 when it reopens the 231 Rumbelows stores it is buying from Thorn EMI Plc. It also bought a 10% stake in the IPC Peripherals Inc subsidiary of IPC Corp Ltd of Singapore to seal a deal under which it will market IPC multimedia products.

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