Behind the Week’s Headlines: Corel challenges the market

Corel Corp.’s latest foray offering direct sales and services could be an interesting new direction for the company. It offers choice and added value for the customer, and that is really what our business is all about. If it is good for the customer it should be good for Corel. This won’t make everyone

happy, least of all their existing channel partners, but maybe they can gain market share.

Obviously they will face some huge issues from a logistic standpoint, as they try to move from a software development company to a software services organization. This will have to be accomplished as it keeps their traditional channel force happy and in tact while trying to expand their customer base.

Then again, ideas have never been a problem at Corel, but the execution of those ideas and strategies have sure made headlines.

With the evolution of the industry, Corel tried to redefine itself numerous times with the acquisition of the WordPerfect software suite platform, as well as the marketing of their brand of Linux and who knows how may other re-engineering projects in between.

Ultimately, customers make the tough choices, but if it is a good product and service, we wish them well.

Corel who has been a past darling of the Canadian stock market, with big investment from the government, the money managers and companies around the world in general, but most specifically from the North American marketplace. It has always enjoyed wide support from the channel and customers alike

It looks like the last few years have been the toughest on this niche company. This was a niche, which at one time was a franchise in the graphics and editing field. There wasn’t any company or individual who was involved in the graphics arena and didn’t understand what Corel did.

They built graphics software that allowed you to edit and manipulate images. Simple really, their software did it better than anyone else, and that is the way they marketed the program.

Challenges are what make the evolution of this industry exciting. In today’s changing marketplace, every company faces a series of challenges in order for it to continue to prosper.

Frank Abate is the president and founder of Mississauga, Ont.-based Infinity Technologies Inc., one of the top VARs in Canada.

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