By Lisa Johnston
New products on display at the American International Toy Fair, held in N
TORONTO -Eiger Technology, the OEM maker of computer products and peripherals, signed a memorandum of understanding to buy a 55 percent stake in Standard Telecom America (STA) from Korea's Standard Telecom, a manufacturer of wireless phones and pagers.
As part of the deal, STA's Nixxo-branded pagers will be rebranded Nixxo by Eiger Technology. STA will also enter the wireless phone market in the United States and other countries with Nixxo-branded CDMA and GSM phones, possibly around the end of the year, said Eiger chief financial officer Keith Attoe. Eiger will "do some manufacturing of phones" in its Korea factory, complementing Standard Telecom's factories.
Through its factories, Korea's Standard Telecom supplies CDMA phones to Audiovox on an OEM basis. Attoe said STA will protect Standard's OEM relationships with Audiovox and future OEM customers of STA by selling different models under the Nixxo name.
Eiger recently bought a near-third interest in California-based Nixxo Technologies from Standard Telecom, which established the company to develop GSM chipsets.
Both acquisitions are part of Eiger's plan to diversify beyond computer products and peripherals such as DSL and dial-up modems and headphone MP3 portables. Eiger makes Compaq's iPaq MP3 portable, Attoe noted.
Eiger's volume for the year ending Sept. 30, 2000, hit $38 million.
STA is the second-largest pager supplier in the United States after Motorola, Attoe said, and its volume hit $33 million in 2000, about 90 percent of it in pagers.
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