EADS today confirmed that it is negotiating with Nokia to acquire that company’s Professional Mobile Radio (PMR) business to enhance its position in ‘mission critical’ secure wireless communications systems.
Nokia’s PMR business, including its TETRA infrastructure and terminals operation, currently employs 325 people who would be transferred to EADS.
The Nokia TETRA business would complement EADS’ existing TETRAPOL systems – both are digital, cellular trunked radio systems. According to www.tetrawatch.net, the main differences between them and public mobile radio systems such as GSM are faster call set-up, group calls, priority calls, encryption, and ability to make calls without connection via a base station.
‘This move enhances EADS’ position in the global homeland security sector. Together, Nokia’s TETRA and our TETRAPOL technologies create an excellent foundation for next generation solutions for mission-critical communications,’ said Stefan Zoller, CEO of EADS Defence and Communications Systems (DCS).
Although TETRA was adopted by the European Telecommunications Standardisation Institute (ETSI) as the European standard, Tetrapol delivered operational systems at an earlier date, rolling out the world’s first large-scale digital PMR network in 1988 (RUBIS for the French National Gendarmarie). The first TETRA systems, on the other hand, were installed in 1997.
The closing of the acquisition is expected before the end of 2005, subject to receipt of the necessary regulatory approvals.