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12 April, 2006 - 09:34 By Staff Reporter

Firm still big box office via £8.2m deal

Telephonetics plc, the Hemel Hempstead-based speech recognition specialist, has won a major contract with Cineworld Cinemas worth £8.2 million over the next six years.Telephonetics plc, the Hemel Hempstead-based speech recognition specialist, has won a major contract with Cineworld Cinemas worth £8.2 million over the next six years.

The deal covers the supply of automatic speech recognition (ASR) booking and information technology to all of Cineworld’s 78 UK and Irish sites, taking Telephonetics’ market-share of major UK national cinema operators to 80 per cent.

The agreement was signed after a competitive pitch against Cineworld’s incumbent provider and Telephonetics’ Hemel Hempstead neighbour, Eckoh Technologies.

Telephonetics has worked with Cineworld since 1997, but the cinema chain’s former UGC sites, which were acquired in 2004, have until now continued to use Eckoh and BT.

The new deal is expected to double revenues from the previous contract and sparked a 6.78 per cent jump in Telephonetics’ share price, which rose 2p to 31.5p a share.

As part of the contract Cineworld has also become the first cinema chain to sign-up to the MovieLine® Agent Interface software, which links MovieLine’s ASR booking service with the new call-centre operation being provided by Telephonetics.

Anthony Mckay, Tele-phonetics’ managing director, said: “By expanding our product portfolio to include MovieLine Agent Interface we can now provide cinemas with the complete telephone booking solution for their business.

“Telephonetics is extremely well placed and looking both to capitalise on its dominance in the UK cinema industry and to exploit the exciting opportunities further afield.”

Steve Wiener, Cineworld chief executive, added: “We have worked with Telep-honetics for over nine years and they have always provided us with excellent solutions and great service.

“Automated telephone booking is critical to our business and we are delighted that Telephonetics will now be fulfilling this vital function for the whole of our circuit.”

Established in 1994 and floated onto AIM last year, Telephonetics is now the UK’s leading speech recognition and telephony specialist.

Its flagship product, MovieLine, is used by the UK’s largest cinema chain – Odeon – UCI, Apollo and Showcase cinemas as well as Cineworld.

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