USA Mobility, AMDS and Sensus form meter monitoring alliance
Effort geared at providing meter monitoring services over two-way NPCS network. Agreement includes s of NPCS license to AMDS as well as revenue sharing...
ALEXANDRIA, VA, June 10, 2005 (PRNewswire-FirstCall) -- USA Mobility Inc., a provider of wireless messaging services, Advanced Metering Data Systems LLC (AMDS), a developer of automatic meter reading (AMR) fixed network technologies, and Sensus Metering Systems, a provider of utility meter reading systems, announced an alliance among the three companies to provide utility meter monitoring services over a two-way narrowband personal communications services (NPCS) network.
Under the agreement, USA Mobility will sell one of its NPCS licenses to AMDS for $1.5 million and the opportunity to receive an additional $3.5 million in future royalty payments based upon a percentage of the monitoring revenues derived from AMDS's use of the NPCS license. USA Mobility also will receive a right to acquire a future equity interest in AMDS. Additionally, USA Mobility will provide AMDS with ongoing network services, including turnkey system build-out, maintenance, repair and central monitoring. The agreement also provides AMDS with access to USA Mobility's tower locations throughout North America where the AMR fixed network receivers will be installed.
AMDS is the network provider for the FlexNet with AMDS Connect fixed base AMR system that is exclusively marketed by Sensus Metering Systems to electric utilities across North America. Sensus, which has participated in the AMR market since the 1980's, is the world's largest manufacturer of water meters. It also manufactures gas and electricity meters.
With the founders of AMDS holding patents under which more than 13 million currently deployed water, gas and electricity AMR meters operate, AMDS has significant product development experience in the AMR market. The AMDS automatic meter reading solution is based on transceiver gateways installed at the base of existing radio towers, with each tower capable of communicating directly with compatible utility meters over an area of 60-to-300 square miles. This broad coverage area, using the AMDS network infrastructure, vastly improves flexibility and adds features and economic benefits not previously available to the utility industry.
Vincent D. Kelly, president and chief executive officer of USA Mobility, said: "We are delighted to be a part of this strategic alliance with AMDS and Sensus. We believe this three-way relationship is an excellent opportunity for us to expand our telemetry business and generate incremental revenues. We believe there is significant growth potential for machine-to-machine wireless communications and look forward to working with AMDS and Sensus to help fulfill this potential."
AMDS president and founder H. Britton Sanderford, Jr. said, "This agreement puts in place the final partnership needed to complete and support our North American network coverage strategy. When combined with the exclusive electricity marketing agreement we signed with Sensus earlier this year, we now have the nationwide ability to install transceiver gateways on existing towers, monitor and maintain tower equipment, and serve utilities throughout the country reliably on a 24x365 basis. USA Mobility's leadership in the U.S. two-way messaging and wireless data industry, as well its superior network infrastructure and technical know-how, makes it an excellent partner for AMDS. We welcome the opportunity to join with USA Mobility and our existing partner Sensus to promote the AMDS-enhanced AMR solutions as part of an overall electricity market strategy to service to our growing base of meter monitoring customers."
Dan Harness, president of Sensus, noted, "We believe this is a great arrangement for Sensus, AMDS and USA Mobility. The two-way and one-way capability of the AMDS RF fixed network system provides the flexibility that electric utilities have sought in an AMI (Advanced Metering Infrastructure) system. As a result, we have experienced a surprisingly high level of receptivity by the electric utilities. We see the effects of market timing converging with the right metering systems solution. USA Mobility's advanced network coverage and over 20 years of operational experience will allow us to promote the FlexNet system to a nationwide customer base."
USA Mobility provides services to thousands of customers with more than 5.5 million paging units in service. It is the world's largest provider of long range, two-way paging networks, which cover more than 90% of the U.S. population. USA Mobility's extensive network coverage is further underscored by its proven track record and dedication to excellent service and customer responsiveness.
AMDS is the only AMR provider authorized by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to operate mass deployed AMR networks on primary-use, unshared radio spectrum. This FCC-licensed operation enhances reliability for real-time access to meter data as well as more advanced AMR features such as outage notification, brown-out warning, energy management program support, load control, and temperature control for electric utilities, as well as broken pipe and leak detection for water utilities.
USA Mobility, AMDS and Sensus believe their alliance will ensure secure and unimpeded access to water, gas and electric meter data on a national scale. They also believe this seamlessly integrated solution will help give utilities from coast-to-coast the confidence they need to invest in long-term, broad-based AMR deployments.
The transfer of the NPCS license to AMDS is subject to approval by the FCC. The parties anticipate obtaining FCC approval during the third quarter of this year.
Advanced Metering Data Systems (www.amdswireless.com) is a utility meter monitoring and wireless connectivity company headquartered in New Orleans, La. AMDS provides automatic meter reading technology and wireless monitoring services to electric, gas and water utilities using patented technology and a dedicated, FCC-licensed fixed wireless network.
The Sensus Metering Systems companies (www.sensus.com) are leading world-class providers of high-value metering and Automatic Meter Reading (AMR) solutions for water, gas, electric, and heat utilities as well as sub-metering entities worldwide. Additional linked businesses include Smith-Blair Inc. a leading provider of pipe clamp & coupling products for the water, gas, and industrial markets; and Sensus Precision Die Casting that produces complex, high quality die-castings.
USA Mobility Inc. (www.usamobility.com), based in Alexandria, Va., is a leading provider of paging products and other wireless services to the business, government and healthcare sectors. USA Mobility offers traditional one-way and advanced two-way paging via its nationwide networks covering more than 90% of the U.S. population and with roaming partners in Canada and Mexico. In addition, the company offers mobile voice and data services through Nextel and AT&T Wireless, including BlackBerry and GPS location applications. The company's product offerings include wireless connectivity systems for medical, business, government and other campus environments. USA Mobility focuses on the business-to-business marketplace and supplies mobile connectivity solutions to over two-thirds of the Fortune 1000 companies.