Net Tax Panel Seats Filled

Net Tax Panel Seats Filled<@VM>Wang Scoops Up Van Dyke<@VM>Hadron Buys Vail Research<@VM>Different Strokes for VC Folks<@VM>L-3 Acquires Microdyne<@VM>Maximus Looks to Fund New HQ<@VM>Chicago Calls on TASC<@VM>Gilmore Targets Spammers

Congressional leaders have appointed representatives from some of the nation's leading information technology firms to a new blue-ribbon panel on Internet taxation.

The 19-member Advisory Commission on Electronic Commerce includes James Barksdale, chief executive officer of Netscape; Michael Armstrong, chairman and CEO of AT&T; Larry Carter, chief financial officer for Cisco Systems; Ted Waite, chairman and CEO of Gateway; John Sidgmore, vice chair of MCI WorldCom; and Stan Sokul of the Association for Interactive Media.

The commission was authorized by the Internet Tax Freedom Act, signed Oct. 21 by President Clinton. The act imposes a three-year moratorium on state and local taxation of cyberspace and gives the commission 18 months to recommend a fair taxation regime for the Internet.

Also on the commission are the secretaries of the Commerce and Treasury departments, the U.S. trade representative, Virginia Gov. James Gilmore and Utah Gov. Michael Leavitt.
Wang Global of Billerica, Mass., added network planning and design capabilities when it bought J.G. Van Dyke & Associates Inc. of Bethesda, Md., early this month. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Van Dyke brings annual revenue of about $25 million and 240 employees, and will operate as a subsidiary of Wang Government Services of McLean, Va.

Wang and Van Dyke worked together on the Defense Messaging System. Most of Van Dyke's business comes from the Defense Department and intelligence agencies.
Hadron Inc., a $21 million-a-year information and technical services company, plans to buy Vail Research and Technology Corp. for $1.6 million.

The deal is expected to close by the end of December, company officials said. Hadron of Alexandria, Va., provides services to government agencies in areas such as secure computer systems, computer systems support and intelligent weapons systems.

Based in Annandale, Va., Vail's customers include the Air Force, Army, Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, Department of Transportation, Department of Commerce, NASA, the Navy and U.S. Special Operations Command.

The two companies fit together well because both are players in the security and intelligence fields, said Amber Gordon, executive vice president of Hadron.The industries that attracted the most venture capital in the United States from 1987-1996 were computer technology, medical and health care, and telecommunications, according to a new National Science Foundation report.

By comparison, venture capital in Europe zeroed in more on firms making industrial machinery and equipment, high-fashion clothing and other consumer products.

Over the 10-year period of the study, venture capital markets increased dramatically in the United States and Europe. In 1996, U.S. venture capital investments reached $9.4 billion vs. a low of $2.6 billion in 1991, and $8.6 billion in Europe, nearly twice the amount invested in 1993.
L-3 Communications Holdings Inc. of New York announced a plan to buy Microdyne Communications Technologies Inc. for $90 million in cash ? its fifth major acquisition of the year.

Microdyne of Alexandria, Va., makes telemetry and sensing equipment for commercial customers and federal agencies such as such NASA and the Naval Air Warfare Center. About 20 percent of the company's $53.2 million in revenue came from government customers.

L-3, a spinoff of Lockheed Martin Corp., makes avionics and telemetry equipment as well as space and wireless components. About 70 percent of the company's business comes from the Department of Defense. L-3 had 1997 revenue of $705 million. Company officials expect to complete the acquisition in early 1999.
Maximus Inc. of McLean, Va., plans to issue 4 million shares of stock in a secondary offering this week to raise $56 million for general corporate purposes, including buying a new headquarters.

The 2,800-employee firm, whose stock closed Dec. 4 at a 52-week high of $32.68, helps federal, state and local governments manage their health and human services programs. Maximus made four acquisitions this year, has a contract backlog of $276 million and saw its revenue shoot from $167 million last year to $233 million in 1998. Net income jumped from $9.3 million to $14.4 million.

The company first sold stock publicly in June 1997 for $16 a share.
Chicago has awarded four contracts to TASC Inc. to provide a range of information technology planning and implementation services for the city.

The new contracts are part of an overall effort by Chicago's Department of Business and Information Services to move from an antiquated system of information technologies to modern networks and Web-based applications, said Stuart Pesko, director of Emerging Businesses for TASC's corporate office in Reading, Mass. The contracts have a potential value of $17.5 million over five years.Virginia Gov. James Gilmore early next year will propose an Internet Policy Act that would outlaw spamming, the transmission of unsolicited, bulk e-mail over the Internet.

The state legislation was recommended by the Commission on Information Technology in a report delivered to the governor Dec. 2.

The 36-member commission, which includes private sector and government leaders from across Virginia, also called for vigorous prosecution of those who use the Internet for fraud or invasion of privacy.

The governor will include the commission's recommendations in legislation he will propose after the state assembly begins its next session Jan. 14, according to a spokesman for the governor.

Gilmore last week also called for a global summit on Internet policy to be held next year in Virginia, which he intends to co-host with Rep. Tom Bliley, R-Va., chairman of the House Commerce Committee.

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