SOURCE: Airspan Networks, Inc.

February 28, 2007 16:01 ET

Costa Rica's Incumbent Operator I.C.E. Awards Major Contract to Furnish Large WiMAX Network in Latin America

Core Technology Will Be Airspan's HiperMAX Platform

BOCA RATON, FL -- (MARKET WIRE) -- February 28, 2007 -- Airspan Networks, Inc. (NASDAQ: AIRN), a leading worldwide provider of WiMAX and Wi-Fi based broadband wireless access networks, and carrier class Voice-over-Internet Protocol (VoIP) solutions, today announced that I.C.E. (El Instituto Costarricense de Electricidad) of Costa Rica, the country's main telecommunications operator, has awarded Airspan through its local partner, Datatell (Datatell 3000 de Costa Rica), a contract to build a nationwide WiMAX network in the licensed 3.5Ghz frequency band. The project is one of the most ambitious and comprehensive WiMAX networks planned for deployment in Latin America in 2007, and it is expected eventually to cover all major population centers in Costa Rica.

I.C.E. offers a wide range of fixed and mobile networks and data telecommunications services throughout Costa Rica. The company, which owns significant 3.5GHz frequency spectrum, awarded the contract through formal bidding and rigorous selection processes conducted in 2006 among various international WiMAX vendors. The Airspan-Datatell bid, which included a detailed technology evaluation, radio frequency planning, capacity designs, local services, network support and implementation, was judged by I.C.E. to be the best bid submitted.

The network deployment is scheduled to begin early in the second half of 2007, with the network to begin to be operational by year end. The network will serve enterprise and other customers that demand high-grade IP-based data services in Costa Rica's urban areas. The core network will be based on Airspan's cutting-edge HiperMAX WiMAX platform. During the first phase of the network roll out, Airspan will supply more than 400 of its world leading HiperMAX base stations. The project also calls for Airspan-Datatell to improve I.C.E.'s backbone network infrastructure to increase data capacity, and to provide implementation services.

The first phase of the project, including local integration and services, is valued at approximately $11.0 million, of which Airspan equipment and services will comprise approximately sixty percent. I.C.E. has indicated that it may expand the network in the future for added functionality or broader geographical coverage.

"We have worked diligently with I.C.E. during the last year and are extremely pleased to announce the award of this network, the largest WiMAX project awarded so far in Latin America," said Amit Ancikovsky, Airspan's Vice President & General Manager, Americas. "From the start of the bidding process we gave I.C.E. clear visibility into the current and future applications of WiMAX, and we invested heavily in a detailed network design to optimize performance and minimize cost. We are extremely proud of this show of confidence in our technology and operational capabilities."

About I.C.E. Telecomunicaciones

I.C.E. (El Instituto Costarricense de Electricidad) is the sole supplier of telecommunications and energy services in Costa Rica. I.C.E. has distinguished itself in Central America as a leader in the development and implementation of new technologies. It offers a wide variety of services in Costa Rica and has several technological platforms that allow it to diversify the service options for its customers, both residential and corporate.

More information on I.C.E can be found at

About Airspan Networks Inc.

Airspan Networks provides fixed and wireless voice and data systems and solutions, including Voice Over IP (VoIP). Its wireless products serve operators around the world in both licensed and unlicensed frequency bands between 700 MHz and 6 GHz, including both PCS and 3.5GHz international bands. Airspan has a strong wireless product roadmap that includes products meeting 802.11 a/b/g Wi-Fi standards, and WiMAX Forum Certified equipment that includes software upgradeability to the Mobile WiMAX 802.16e-2005 standard. Airspan is on the Board and is a founder member of the WiMAX Forum and a member of the Wi-Fi Alliance. The Company has deployments in more than 100 countries with more than 400 operators, 100 of which use Airspan's WiMAX Forum Certified and non-certified products. Airspan's wireless systems are based on radio technology that delivers excellent area coverage, high security and resistance to fading. These systems can be deployed rapidly and cost effectively, providing an attractive alternative to traditional wired communications networks. Airspan's AS.TONE VoIP system is a carrier class, turnkey solution that provides carriers with Class 4, Class 5 and IP-Centrex solutions and has a Softswitch and Gateways supporting SIP/H323 and SIP. Airspan also offers radio planning, network installation, integration, training and support services to facilitate the deployment and operation of its systems. Airspan is an international telecommunications equipment provider headquartered in Boca Raton, Florida.

More information on Airspan can be found at

This press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. All statements, other than statements of historical facts, including statements regarding our strategy, future operations, financial position, future revenues, projected costs, prospects, plans and objectives of management, may be deemed to be forward-looking statements. The words "anticipates," "believes," "estimates," "expects," "intends," "may," "plans," "projects," "will," "would" and similar expressions or negative variations thereof are intended to identify forward-looking statements, although not all forward-looking statements contain these identifying words. We may not actually achieve the plans, intentions or expectations disclosed in our forward-looking statements and you should not place undue reliance on our forward-looking statements. There are a number of important factors that could cause actual results or events to differ materially from the plans, intentions and expectations disclosed in the forward-looking statements we make. Investors and others are therefore cautioned that a variety of factors, including certain risks, may affect our business and cause actual results to differ materially from those set forth in the forward-looking statements. These risk factors include, without limitation, (i) a slowdown of expenditures by communication service providers; (ii) increased competition from alternative communication systems; (iii) the failure of our existing or prospective customers to purchase products as projected; (iv) our inability to successfully implement cost reduction or containment programs; (v) a loss of any of our key customers; (vi) our ability to retain Axtel as the largest customer of Proximity products; and (vii) specific to this press release, Airspan's ability to successfully deliver, plan and implement the network proposed by I.C.E. The Company is subject to the risks and uncertainties described in its filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including its Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended 31 December, 2005, its Form 10-Q for the quarters ended April 2, 2006, July 2, 2006 and October 1, 2006 and its Form S-3 Registration Statement filed on January 24, 2007. You should read those factors as being applicable to all related forward-looking statements wherever they appear in this press release. We do not assume any obligation to update any forward-looking statements.

Contact Information

  • For Investment inquiries, contact:
    Airspan Networks:
    David Brant
    Chief Financial Officer
    Tel: +1 561 893-8650
    Fax: +1 561 893-8671
    Email: Email Contact