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Hummingbird acquires TN3270 software from McGill University

Published: 13 Jan 1997

Hummingbird acquires from McGill University all rights to TN3270 terminal emulation software and all associated intellectual property.

Acquisition of key mainframe connectivity software enhances Hummingbird’s best-of-breed PC to enterprise connectivity product line

North York, Ontario, Canada -- Hummingbird Communications Ltd. (TSE: "HUM" and NASDAQ: "HUMCF"), the worldwide technology and market leader in the PC to UNIX integration software industry, today announces that it has signed an agreement to acquire from McGill University and PolarSoft Inc. all rights to TN3270 and TN5250 terminal emulation software. This acquisition will enable Hummingbird to offer enterprise customers best-of-breed TN3270 connectivity for Windows 3.X, Windows NT, Windows 95 and Macintosh desktops.

Under terms of the agreement of purchase and sale signed yesterday, Hummingbird will acquire all rights to TN3270 terminal emulation software and all intellectual property and goodwill associated therewith for an aggregate purchase price of Cdn$ 8.5 million. As per the terms of the agreement, the senior development and other personnel will be employed by Hummingbird. The transaction is expected to close later this week and is subject to customary conditions.

"The migration of enterprise desktops to open standards-based TCP/IP has stimulated significant demand for TN3270 client to mainframe connectivity within our customer base," said Fred Sorkin, Chairman, President and CEO of Hummingbird Communications Ltd. "McGill has more than 10 years experience in developing robust, first class host terminal emulation, and this acquisition will provide Hummingbird with a key enterprise connectivity technology that addresses the needs of the enterprise, and our customer base."

"The addition of first rate TN3270 to our product portfolio will also allow Hummingbird to substantially expand its customer base by approaching the mainframe users who are standardizing on TCP/IP networks for their PC desktop", added Sorkin. "The TN3270, which will be integrated in other Hummingbird products as well as available as a stand-alone terminal emulation product, will give us another product line in the area of PC to enterprise connectivity, well complementing the current major revenue producers, the Exceed PC X server family of products, and the NFS Maestro line of products. I definitely consider this acquisition strategically important as it will allow us to offer one stop shopping to our existing customers and, more importantly, acquire new customers."

"The software and its predecessors were originally developed at McGill to allow us to effectively and economically use modem networked workstations to connect to our central systems," said Alan Greenberg, Director of Computing and Telecommunications for McGill University, and Vice-President of McGill Systems Inc., the company which has been marketing the products on behalf of the University. "This is a good example of how a technology can be developed at a university and transferred to industry for full commercial exploitation. We are proud that Hummingbird has chosen our software to integrate into their product line, and are confident that they will provide our existing customers with a superb level of service."

McGill’s HostExplorer is a high performance TN3270, TN5250 and VT420 terminal emulation application suite for all Windows platforms and Macintosh personal computers that delivers full-featured connectivity between PCs, mainframes and other hosts over standards-based TCP/IP networks. McGill products feature extensive desktop integration and support for HLLAPI/EHLLAPI/WinHLLAPI programming interfaces for automating data mining and application resources. HostExplorer provides full support for the advanced TN3270E protocol that enables 3287 printing, efficient application switching and LU (Logical Unit) assignment making it ideal for enterprise mainframe connectivity.

Hummingbird Communications Ltd. specializes in the development of enterprise internetworking software products and document distribution solutions that provide high performance access to internetwork-based information and applications. Hummingbird products are sold and supported internationally by authorized resellers in more than 40 countries. The Company is headquartered in North York, Ontario, Canada, with offices in Mountain View, C.A., Washington, D.C., and Raleigh, N.C. in the United States; and Geneva, Switzerland; Munich, Germany; Paris, France; and Maidenhead in the United Kingdom in Europe; and an office servicing the Pacific Rim in Sydney, Australia.

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