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SurfKitchen expands into the Middle East with major customer win – MTC - Vodafone Kuwait

Reading, UK, 18 April 2005 - SurfKitchen, the leading provider of dynamic user experience (DUE) software, which enables mobile operators to increase data services and content consumption and transform the mobile user experience, today announced its first Middle Eastern customer, MTC - Vodafone Kuwait. MTC is the largest mobile operator in the Middle East, and recently acquired Celtel, the leading cellular operator in Sub-Saharan Africa.

SurfKitchen has been selected to implement its SurfKit Mobile software for the roll out of MTC-Vodafone’s branded, mobile menu data service offering, available in both Arabic and English. SurfKitchen will enable MTC-Vodafone to have greater brand exposure, whilst offering easier access to premium, value-added mobile data services for its 1.3 million mobile user base. SurfKitchen’s technology will help to boost service and data consumption, reduce complexity and encourage more frequent subscriber usage - ultimately increasing operator data revenues.

SurfKitchen’s patented technology gives a superior experience to alternative browser-based solutions. It will provide MTC-Vodafone subscribers with a unique desktop menu anywhere they go, giving them easy, direct access to data and multimedia services. The technology enables content to be sent over the air and cached on a wide range of mobile handsets allowing users to view this content offline. Users can then decide to connect seamlessly online to view additional content or make a purchase, such as a ringtone.

Mr. Haitham Al-Khalid, Chief Business Development Officer at MTC group said: “We want to deliver an innovative user experience to our subscribers; SurfKitchen will uniquely help us to achieve this. We chose SurfKitchen for its outstanding technological performance, understanding and existing market deployments.  What’s exciting is that this is the first deployment of its kind in the Middle East and this will significantly advance the usage of mobile data in the region.”

Michel Quazza, SurfKitchen’s CEO said: “We are excited to work with MTC-Vodafone as they continue their rapid growth across the Middle East and Africa. Kuwait is a market of sophisticated users in considerable volume, and this deployment will be really interesting as we measure the adoption of advanced data services. SurfKitchen provides a broader, more complete set of functionality than any other vendor, with real-world commercially launched solutions. This is a strategic milestone for us, as the Middle East is integral in developing our profile and overall global expansion strategy.”
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About MTC-Vodafone Kuwait

Mobile MTC-Vodafone is the leading mobile operator in Kuwait with 1.3 million customers and 60 per cent market share. MTC-Vodafone delivers cutting-edge services to its customers, including EDGE, WiFi, MMS, Media Streaming and a wide range of Voice Activated Systems (VAS).

Founded in 1983, MTC is listed on the Kuwait Stock Exchange and has achieved a sound reputation for high level of business successes, often exceeding investor's expectations.

In September 2002, MTC entered into a Partner Network Agreement with Vodafone, the world’s leading mobile community. The agreement was the first of its kind in the Middle East and has been followed with an agreement in Bahrain, which was launched in December 2003. As a Partner Network, MTC offers Vodafone and its Partners' customers seamless access to Vodafone's international services whilst traveling in Kuwait. MTC customers now enjoy the benefits of Vodafone's existing services and its innovative service pipeline, enabling easy access and service delivery.

Vodafone is one of the largest mobile telecommunications network companies in the world, and has more 151 million customers worldwide.


About MTC Group
Mobile Telecommunications Company (MTC) was founded in 1983 and today is one of the largest mobile operators the in Middle East and Africa, with more than 8.5 million customers in Kuwait, Bahrain, Jordan, Iraq, Lebanon and 13 countries in Sub-Saharan Africa. MTC is listed on the Kuwait Stock Exchange.

In September 2002, MTC entered into a Partner Network Agreement with Vodafone, the world's leading mobile community in Kuwait creating MTC Vodafone Kuwait. In 2003 MTC continued its expansion with the acquisition of 96.4% of Fastlink in Jordan. MTC’s aspirations did not slow down and in 2003 MTC-Vodafone Bahrain was launched with the first 3G/EDGE nationwide network in the world. In 2004 the MTC Atheer service was launched in Southern Iraq, and today covers Baghdad as well. 2004 also witnessed the Government of Lebanon handing over the management of one of the two mobile networks (Mic2) to the MTC Group.

Most recently in March of 2005 MTC acquired Celtel International, a Dutch communications network company with major interests in 13 Sub-Saharan African countries, in one of the biggest telecom deals in the Middle East and Africa worth $3.36 billion. The MTC Group now operates in 18 countries. With this deal MTC group has completed its first phase of its 3X3X3 strategy which entails becoming a global operator with more than 15 million customers by 2011. MTC will continue to expand internationally through acquisitions, partnerships and green-field opportunities.

About SurfKitchen
SurfKitchen powers the Dynamic User Experience (DUE) and transforms mobile use world-wide. It is the leading mobile software provider that enables any organisation to rapidly and cost effectively offer advanced mobile data services and to remotely customise the look and feel for the end user. SurfKitchen is currently featured in the Sunday Times’ Tech Track 100 and is one of the best-performing and innovative high-tech private companies of Europe and Israel in the fourth annual Tornado100 list from Tornado Insider magazine. Since the launch of its flagship software SurfKit Mobile™ in May 2003, SurfKitchen now includes O2 UK, O2 Germany, Telenor, Sonofon, Telefónica Moviles, TIM Italy, TIM Greece and Smart Global amongst its customers.

SurfKitchen was founded in 1999 and currently has offices across Europe and Asia. For further information visit: www.surfkitchen.com

For further information please contact:
Scott Allen
Marketing Director, SurfKitchen
+44 (0)118 929 8072
scott.allen@surfkitchen.com

Jaime Edmund / Claire Lynch
GBC, SurfKitchen PR Agency
+44 (0)208 322 1922
jaimee@gbc.co.uk/ clairel@gbc.co.uk




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