Olivetti has reached an agreement to sell its PC division to Centenary, a US company which specialises in buying distressed businesses. Centenary is understood to have signed a letter of intent to buy the struggling Italian company, although Olivetti declined to comment. Olivetti's PC business chief executive Roberto Colaninno has previously warned that the company's plans to sell its assets, including its PC division, may be delayed or changed. He also claimed that an Italian parliamentary probe into the company's balance sheets proposed last week could lead to the company's closure, and to Olivetti "losing all its clients the next day".
Kings Healthcare Trust has installed an ATM network designed to facilitate research into brain disorders. The #100,000 network is based around a 3Com CELLplex 7000 backbone switch and a 3Com LinkSwitch 2700. It will enable real-time images to be transferred between two of Kings' London hospital wards and its neurological department, allowing doctors to monitor the progress of patients with brain disorders before and after treatment.
Colin Sweeney, special projects manager at Kings, commented: "Because of the sensitive nature of the data being transferred, as well as the need for the accuracy of the images being studied, we needed a reliable network which could deliver a consistent level of bandwidth. ATM seemed the appropriate choice."
IBM is planning to invest $590 million (#347 million) in two new hard disk drive plants in Thailand. The two plants will be wholly owned by IBM and located in Thailand's eastern region. They are expected to generate annual revenues of around $250 million. Work on the buildings is due to be completed by the end of next year.
Job.net, the recruitment Web site produced by PC Week's publisher VNU Business Publications, is proving a roaring success. Just a week after going live, a total of 227,000 hits were recorded and 7,312 advanced searches were made. Job seekers can use the search facility to make a detailed selection on skills, location, salary and job title. The total number of recruiters' home pages accessed on job.net was 4,801. www.jobnet.vnu.co.uk.
Sherlock Holmes has helped Microsoft crack a software piracy case. A user rang Microsoft's Sherlock Holmes Hotline and alerted the company to Rugby-based Star Computer Services, which had been supplying PCs installed with illegal copies of Microsoft software. Star Computer Services agreed to pay an undisclosed amount in damages and costs to Microsoft. "Microsoft will take firm action against those found to be making and supplying illegal copies of its software," said Sharon Baylay, Microsoft's marketing manager for anti-piracy.
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