Corel has announced it will be increasing its presence in Australia, with the establishment of a permanent sales office in Sydney. The new arrangement will not affect existing distribution arrangements with Q*Soft and Tech Pacific, nor will it affect the company's service and support contracts with Wang.
The new office will exist mainly to support the sales forces of the existing distributors, as well as to provide specialised sales support for large customers. There will be six staff employed by Corel in Australia: a country manager; a retail manager; a corporate manager; managers for the Brisbaneand Melbourne markets and a "floater", most likely working in Sydney but responsible for New Zealand.
According to a Corel spokesperson, the location of the Australian headquarters has not yet been finalised, but a number of sites are being considered. The company is also "aggressively recruiting" top-level staff.
When ARN met with Corel, it had hired a retail manager for the Australian operation, but was not yet willing to disclose the person's identity. Corel said it would be "at least three months" before these decisions were finalised and ready to be made public.
The move into Australia will be seen by many as long overdue aggression, especially in promoting its WordPerfect Office range of productivity applications, acquired from Novell in 1996. As well as promoting the WordPerfect Suite as an alternative to Microsoft's Office products, Corel's spokesperson said the company wants to maintain the profile of its graphics products such as CorelDraw, and also to introduce new products based on the Java platform.