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News of  February 8, 2000
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Ford unleashes power of the Internet for employees around the world
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DETROIT - Ford Motor Company is taking a step forward to reach its vision of being on the leading edge of technology and connect more closely with its customers. In support of this vision, the company is announcing that eligible employees worldwide will be provided a computer, printer and Internet usage at home for a nominal fee.

Ford_Internet

Toary Tayler (r), a product analyst for Ford's Mustang program, receives a computer from Jac Nasser and Bill Ford

Photo: Ford

"This program keeps Ford Motor Company and our worldwide team at the leading edge of e-business technology and skills," Ford Chief Executive Officer and President Jac Nasser said. "We're committed to serving consumers better by understanding how they think and act. Having a computer and Internet access in the home will accelerate the development of these skills, provide information across our business and offer opportunities to streamline our processes."

The program will be launched in the United States in the second quarter and will be rolled out globally within 12 months. In the United States, the fee is set at $5 a month. "It is clear that individuals and companies that want to be successful in the 21st century will need to be leaders in using the Internet and related technology," Ford Chairman Bill Ford said. "That's what this program is all about." "E-business is an integral part of our strategy to become the world's leading consumer company of automotive products and services. Today's announcement enhances our ability to reach our vision and further demonstrates our commitment to this e-business strategy," Nasser added.

Additional e-business ventures Ford has recently announced include the formation of auto-xchange with Oracle Corporation and the strategic alliances with Microsoft CarPoint, TeleTech, Yahoo!, Bolt.com, iVillage.com and UPS Logistics Group.

Bill Ford, Jac Nasser and UAW President Stephen P. Yokich handed over the first computers to Mike Rawson, a health and safety representative of UAW Local 900 at the Wayne Stamping and Assembly Plant in Wayne, Mich., and Toary Taylor, a product analyst for the Mustang program in Dearborn, Mich.

The overall program will be coordinated by PeoplePC, Inc. of San Francisco. The computers and printers will be provided by Hewlett-Packard Company of Palo Alto, Calif. UUNET, an MCI WorldCom company based in Fairfax, Va., will provide the Internet service.

Employees will access the Internet through a special portal that will allow them to customize their options, preferences and shortcuts. The portal will offer direct links to many Ford services and information, and it will be customized for different regions of the world. The base computer will have a 500-Mhz Celeron chip, 64 MB of RAM, a 4.3GB hard disk for storage, a CD-ROM, software, a 15-inch monitor, speakers and a modem. The printer will be a color inkjet. Employees can upgrade to three more powerful computers at their expense and the monthly fee will cover incidental personal use.

(Feb. 3, 2000)

 

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