WALID Transfers Key Internet Patent to IDN Technologies, a Joint Venture with IP Holdings

Internationalized Domain Name Patent to be Licensed and Enforced

Ann Arbor, Michigan,- December 3, 2002 - WALID, Inc. (WALID), a pioneer in internationalized domain name (IDN) technology, announced today that it has decided to aggressively license its patent on internationalizing domain names that enables Internet users worldwide to access domain names and addresses with foreign, non-English characters.

To this end, WALID has transferred ownership of its key Internet patent and related intellectual property (IDN Patents) to IDN Technologies LLC (IDNT) with a mandate to license and enforce the IDN Patents. IDNT is a joint venture between WALID and IP Holdings LLC (IP Holdings), an intellectual property incubator focused on patent commercialization.

The IDN Patents provide fundamental and key technology for IDNs. The Internet Engineering Task Force’s RFC 1035 standard does not allow non-English characters in domain names, which has hampered the proliferation of the Internet in non-English-speaking countries.

Using the IDN patented technology, Internet users can access web pages and use various Internet applications with domain names that include foreign language and other special characters.

The popularity of IDNs is expected to surge in view of the pent-up demand of non-English speaking Internet users and the Internet Engineering Steering Group’s recent approval on October 24, 2002 of a proposed standard for “Internationalizing Domain Names in Applications”.

“We plan to pursue an aggressive licensing program to ensure the broad proliferation of Walid’s technology,” said Alexander Poltorak, managing director of IP Holdings. “Walid has created a fundamental technology which will undoubtedly drive the next round of Internet expansion into the non-English-speaking world. Soon people will be free to speak their native tongue anywhere on the Internet.”

“Over the past several years, WALID tried to commercialize the patented technology,” said Dr. Walid Tout, WALID’s co-founder and the inventor of the patented technology. “Now that our technology is a de facto standard, we are confident that IDN Technologies, backed by IP Holdings, will successfully license our patents to the Internet industry,” he concluded.

Dr. Tout’s IDN technology makes it possible for foreign language users to go beyond the English characters that currently control the Internet domain names. Using the patented technology, Internet users can access web pages and use various Internet applications with domain names that include foreign language and other special characters. This proprietary technology is protected by the U.S. Patent No. 6,182,148, pending U.S. patent applications and corresponding foreign patent applications.

IDNT is exploring a number of alternatives pertaining to the licensing of the IDN Patents, including ways to make the technology widely available so as to promote the growth and use of IDNs.

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