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Miner takes final step to IT

Perth-based company Inter-national Mineral Resources has taken the final step to becoming a telecommunications infrastructure company with its recent re-listing as ‘FTL’ on the Australian Stock Exchange.

Now named FiberTel Limited, the company is the latest entrant to Australia’s $29 billion telecommunications arena, specialising in the rapidly growing integrated telecommunications and data market.

The company took the change of direction after acquiring a 10 per cent stake in carrier Amcom Telecommunications.

It is currently negotiating to take its interest in Amcom to 50 per cent in addition to a $10 million fund raising venture through a placement of shares to US and Australian institutions.

The funds will enable the next stage of the roll out of Amcom’s fibre optic network in Perth and other regional cities.

FiberTel CEO Tony Grist said there was some initial scepticism from the market at “yet another mining company going dot com”.

“We were approached by Amcom for venture funding and, as they were being courted by a number of major eastern states-based carriers, we made a quick decision,” Mr Grist said.

“IMR was just one of the

companies in our group and with the gold price drop, it provided an existing shell for quick access to financial markets.

“There is one gold contract in Badgebup left over from IMR and this is close to being sold or joint ventured.

“I’m confident we can build FiberTel into a national top 100 company in the next five years,” he said.

Amcom, WA’s only licenced telecommunications carrier, is

currently completing installation of a network to Perth’s thirteen metropolitan hospitals which will allow services such as enterprise-wide accounting systems and the transmission of medical images.

The company is also extending its existing carrier network in the CBD and completing the final stage of a contract as metropolitan data network provider for the Health Department of WA.

The network’s multi-platform interface capabilities will allow the HDWA to make wide area network plans in the knowledge the network will accommodate future data service applications.

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