Linksys heralds SOHO networking showdown

Linksys heralds SOHO networking showdown

Small business networking specialist Linksys has moved to Australia in a bid to infiltrate the consumer home connectivity market, currently the domain of Nortel, 3Com, Intel and D-Link.

The US-based vendor recently signed a distribution agreement with Melbourne distributor Multimedia Technology, after that company met Linksys at the US Comdex trade show.

Andrew Cutting, product development manager at Multimedia Technology, explained his company approached Linksys based on the vendor's status as the leading retail SOHO/SMB networking manufacturer in the US.

The distributor plans to make an aggressive move into the retail market via national chains such as Harvey Norman where Nortel's NetGear product line dominate.

"We are hoping it's going to cause a bit of a stir," Cutting said.

In fact, the company claims Linksys will be the catalyst for a pricing shake-up in the retail networking sector.

The distributor only recently started moving Linksys through channels such as the 2500 retailers on its books.

Cutting said it will make a "really hefty" commitment to market the product, despite conceding the Linksys brand is still in its early days.

"Already we have had excellent feedback on the range in terms of both product quality and price," he said.

Californian-based Linksys was founded in 1988 and holds 32 per cent of the North American market in retail SOHO/SMB networking. Its nearest rival is 3Com at 22 per cent share.

The vendor is ranked among Inc. magazine's 1997 Top 500 fastest-growing private companies in America.

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