Corel finally plans to unveil its Office for Java application suite at the Cebit trade show later this month, but does not expect to ship it until the summer, about 18 months late.
The product was originally scheduled to appear by March last year. But it was delayed until the first quarter of 1998, after the desktop applications supplier decided to add support for Visigenic Software?s Visibroker object request broker, in a project codenamed Remagen.
Despite this, Don Sylvester, Corel?s vice president of sales, denied the product was late. ?We?re shipping it when we said we would. We?ve not changed it in terms of the end goal, but we learned a lot while we were developing it and found we could do things in a different way. We found that smaller granular Java Beans are a superior way to implement Java rather than big applications.?
He added that, while it would be wrong to say Corel was betting the farm on Java, it would be fair to say that it would be strategically important in future. However, he does not expect the offering to generate significant revenues until 1999.
Meanwhile, the firm intends to build up its corporate salesforce worldwide to generate more interest in Office for Java.
The aim is to increase corporate sales to 25 per cent of total turnover by the end of the year from 10 per cent now, and as a result, Corel is tripling the UK?s current nine staff. Similar personnel increases are expected across the rest of Europe.
The company is also currently applying to incorporate all its European subsidiaries to make them legal branch offices. The aim is to boost its local presence and improve support for customers, which Sylvester admitted had to date been ?underserviced". This process is expected to take place within the next 30 days.
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