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  • 9 October 2007 12:50

Optima ICM acquires electronics retailer Digital City

Optima ICM Limited (ASX:OPI), the leading Australian computer manufacturer and a major supplier of IT and digital home solutions, has acquired electronics and imaging retailer Digital City giving Optima direct access to retail customers in metropolitan areas.

Optima ICM has agreed to take over the Digital City business from the administrators of Digital City. The acquisition is funded fully out of the working capital. There is no dilution of shareholdings of Optima ICM.

A pioneer in promoting digital convergence technologies, Digital City is a leading retail chain in New South Wales specialising in photo/imaging, IT, home entertainment and communications. It has been in business for 18 years. Digital City has five stores in the Sydney CBD and major suburban shopping centres and an established franchise system in Sydney and Canberra.

Optima ICM has embraced the 3C (Computer, Consumer Electronics and Communication) vision since 2004. This strategic acquisition accelerates the development of its convergence technologies and digital home strategy that is built on multi-branded products. It also complements the strong foundation Optima ICM has built through the 3C Shop buying group in regional areas and gives the company a firm foothold in the metropolitan market.

This acquisition will add more breadth and depth to the product range in both the Digital City stores and franchises, as well as in selected 3C Shops.

“Our ability to control the end-to-end processes of a direct-to-consumer model carrying major household brand name systems and peripherals, puts us in an ideal position to succeed in the more profitable retail market,” said Cornel Ung, Optima ICM’s Chairman and Managing Director.

“The Optima branded systems and accessories further complement these big name products by enhancing the total value for consumers. This can be in the form of a product that fills a gap that exists in the brand products, or accessories that add more value to the household brand names.

“The product categories will include cameras, photo imaging, computers, consumer electronics and communications. We will also leverage Optima’s technical expertise to provide Digital City customers with advice on creating an integrated digital home solution and will offer in-home installation services.”

Optima ICM will expand the flagship store in Sydney, open further Digital City stores and roll out the existing franchise model and support infrastructure in remaining capital cities. The flagship store will support the franchisees in each state. Ung believes this interwoven network of stores will contribute to increased profitability for the group for years to come.

“We are very excited about this acquisition as it represents a major milestone for Optima ICM -- to increase our existing business to a new profit level with multiple growth engines,” said Mr Ung.

By having a direct retail presence in metropolitan regions with an expanded multi-branded product portfolio, the Digital City business will complement the 3C Shop buying group business in regional areas and also benefit the PC manufacturing arm of the Optima Technology Solution business.

“The strong synergy between each portfolio of business will provide more choice, better value and services to Optima’s existing consumer and SMB customers,” said Ung.

About Optima ICM Limited

Optima ICM Limited is the publicly listed technology investment company for the Optima group of companies. Optima ICM trades on the Australian Stock Exchange (ASX) under the share code OPI. Optima ICM Limited was formed in 2002 from the blending of two corporations; Optima and Iocom Limited (ASX:ICM).

The foundations of Optima ICM Limited were built in 1989 when Optima Computer Technology Pty Ltd first commenced trading in the assembly and distribution of desktop and notebook computers and file servers. By 2002 Optima achieved the rank of Australia's number one local PC vendor, now known as Optima Technology Solutions.

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