ElephantTalk Extends Footholds in Indo-China and South Asian Regions; Hartcourt Subsidiary Signs MOU to Acquire 100 Percent of GridTel.Net Limited
HONG KONG, April 17 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Elephant Talk Communications, Inc. (OTC Bulletin Board: ETLK) today announced that it has signed a Memorandum-of-Understanding to acquire GridTel.Net Limited, a medium-sized international exchange carrier. The transaction will provide ElephantTalk significant additional corporate and wholesale telecommunication clients and expand the company's established direct routing to transcontinental operating hubs, submarine and terrestrial cabling networks, satellite connections, and related technical support facilities throughout the region. ElephantTalk is a subsidiary of the Hartcourt Companies, Inc. (OTC Bulletin Board: HRCT).
GridTel.Net has points of presence (POPs) assets in Kathmandu, two sites in Bangladesh, Indonesia, Mongolia, Bangkok, Mumbai, Dehli, Manila, and Cambodia. The company has strong relationships with local ISPs and international carriers in the Indo-China and South Asia regions, and provides direct routes to Nepal, India, Bangladesh, Indonesia, Singapore, Cambodia, Laos, Pakistan and the Philippines. GridTel.Net records over 10 million calling minutes per month and is a holder of an External Telecommunications Services (ETS) license in Hong Kong. GridTel's projected annual revenues for 2002 are US$24 million, with approximate annual gross profit of US$1.44 million.
"GridTel.Net has well dispersed points of presence (POPs) throughout the region and consistent monthly traffic of 10 million minutes. This acquisition will significantly deepen our market penetration, expand our reach in the region and can additionally be used as a backbone for our voice-over-internet-protocol (VOIP) roll out in Indo-China and South Asia," said Mr. Russelle Choi, President and CEO of ElephantTalk. "The addition of GridTel's networks and facilities is expected to increase efficiencies, lower operating cost per minute, provide quicker time to market, and improve profit margins for our consolidated operations. This is the next step in our strategy to expand our strong foothold in the emerging Asian telecom markets, which have yet to be fully deregulated, and to take advantage of their tremendous untapped potential."
"We are excited to join ElephantTalk. This combination is consistent with our goal of providing the absolute highest quality voice solutions for our customers," said Mr. Lewis Lu, General Manager of GridTel. "Our customers will benefit from ElephantTalk's global connections, advanced network architecture and quality customer service."
This acquisition continues ElephantTalk's expansion into Greater Asia's emerging telecom markets. The company has recently signed agreements with:
EADS (EADS, NV) subsidiary EADS Multicoms( www.multicoms.net ) JiTong Network Communications ( http://www.gb.com.cn
China Netcom Corporation ( www.cnc.net.cn )
Great Wall Broadband Network ( http://www.gwbnet.com
Elephant Talk Communications Inc. is a leading telecommunications company established in 1994, located and operated in Hong Kong with offices in Cerritos, CA. and Boston, MA. The company owns switching facilities in China, Hong Kong, U.S., Taiwan and Singapore. ElephantTalk operates international long distance services on both sides of the Pacific to over 220 foreign destinations. They enable telecommunications carriers and other service providers the ability to offer long distance voice, data, fax, and VOIP services to their end-customers, through an advanced and scaleable network. More information on ElephantTalk can be found at www.elephanttalk.com