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A major Czech cable operator becomes a partner in Cesky mobil

17. August 1999

IPB and TIW have announced that Priority Telecom, has joined Cesky mobil. Priority Telecom is wholly owned subsidiary of United Pan-Europe Communications (UPC), one of the leading cable operators in the Czech Republic. UPC presently owns and operates Kabel Net and has agreed to acquire Kabel Plus, subject to regulatory approval, which will give the company a total Czech Republic subscriber base of over 400,000 for its cable television, telephony and Internet services. This announcement comes as Cesky mobil today submitted its proposal for operation of the third GSM mobile license in the Czech Republic. "Priority Telecom adds to the existing strengths of IPB and TIW," said Mario Bertrand, President New Ventures of TIW.

IPB and TIW have announced that Priority Telecom, has joined Cesky mobil. Priority Telecom is wholly owned subsidiary of United Pan-Europe Communications (UPC), one of the leading cable operators in the Czech Republic. UPC presently owns and operates Kabel Net and has agreed to acquire Kabel Plus, subject to regulatory approval, which will give the company a total Czech Republic subscriber base of over 400,000 for its cable television, telephony and Internet services. This announcement comes as Cesky mobil today submitted its proposal for operation of the third GSM mobile license in the Czech Republic.

"Priority Telecom adds to the existing strengths of IPB and TIW," said Mario Bertrand, President New Ventures of TIW. "With a strong and growing base of subscribers, a network of rooftops and tower sites throughout the country and a developing nationwide fibre optic network, Priority Telecom will help ensure a rapid and efficient roll-out of services." added Mario Bertrand.

"We see Cesky mobil's offer of an enhanced mobile network at affordable prices as very attractive and beneficial to the Czech Republic" said Jeff Ross, Managing Director of Priority Wireless Communications, UPC's pan-European wireless communications operation. " We view wireless communications as a natural extension to our plans for the Czech Republic. We have joined the Cesky mobil consortium as we believe they are proposing an innovative solution to the GSM 1800 tender, added Jeff Ross.

"We are extremely pleased to see Cesky mobil continuing to attract strong and credible partners" explained Jan Klacek, Chairman of the Board of Directors and General Manager of IPB. "Only two weeks ago Cesky mobil announced co-operation agreements with information technology leader, PVT and retail chain, Julius Meinl" added Mr. Klacek.

Cesky mobil has pledged to considerably reduce the cost of mobile ownership and usage in the Czech Republic by offering some of the lowest mobile tariffs in Europe. Cesky mobil has also committed to build the most advanced and accessible GSM wireless infrastructure of its kind in Europe: Internet- and multimedia-ready, offering new generation services made possible by the latest technology platforms. Cesky mobil will invest a minimum of US$600 million over the first three years of operations, including network roll-out, an expects to have approximately 1,000 employees within its first two years of operation.

Headquartered in Amsterdam, UPC is the most innovative broadband communications company in Europe and owns and operates one of the largest pan-European groups of broadband communication networks. UPC provides cable television, telephony, high-speed Internet access and programming services in 12 countries across Europe and in Israel. as of June 30th 1999, UPC's systems passed approximately 8.6 million homes with 5.6 million basic cable subscribers. In addition, UPC had 123,400 residential telephony lines and 12,500 business telephony lines, as well as 50,400 residential Internet subscribers and 2,300 business Internet subscribers. UPC completed an IPO in February 1999 and its shares are traded on the Amsterdam Stock Exchange ("UPC") and Nasdaq ("UPCOY").

UPC is a consolidated subsidiary of Denver based UnitedGlobalCom Inc. ("United"), (Nasdaq: "UCOMA"). Microsoft has an interest of approximately 7.8% in UPC.

IPB is the largest private bank in the Czech Republic and at the same time the third largest bank operating in Czech Republic measured by volumes of loans, deposits and total assets. IPB's equity amounts to 13.4 billions CZK, it serves more than 2.6 millions clients and operates over 3 millions accounts.

TIW is a global wireless operator. It develops, acquires, owns and operates wireless telecommunications networks in developing and developed markets throughout the world. TIW provides digital cellular services in Romania, Brazil, India and China. The Company also provides specialised mobile radio (SMR) services in the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Belgium, Spain and Portugal as well as paging services in Mexico and the Netherlands.

TIW is a member of the Canadian-based private communications group Telesystem Ltd., which manages companies which together employ 18 000 people in 30 countries. The leading telecommunications company within the Telesystem group is Teleglobe, which has revenues of over US$ 3,5 billion. The group's strong position in wireless communications is secured internationally through TIW and in Canada through Microcell Telecommunications, operator of the third national wireless licence (PCS 1900 Mhz) awarded by the Canadian government.