Services Briefs: CA, Hostworks, Cipher

Services Briefs: CA, Hostworks, Cipher

CA sets up services

Looking to shore up a weak spot in its operations, Computer Associates International is quietly assembling a group of salespeople whose task will be to promote the company's IT services offerings. CA last week said it began training the 80-person unit, dubbed the Service Development Specialists (SDS) group, in April and plans to officially launch the outfit later this year. Officials at CA said they hope the dedicated sales staff will help put a stop to an ongoing decline in the company's IT services revenue. The services business has been dipping for the past several quarters, and CA reported earlier this week that services revenue dropped to $US65 million in its first quarter, to June 30, down from $83 million in the same period a year ago.

Hostworks cuts a profit

The folks at managed Internet hosting provider Hostworks are popping open the champagne magnums at present after announcing the company's first quarterly profit. For the fourth quarter of the 2002 financial year, the ASX-listed service provider was able to achieve a net profit before tax of $10,344 after amortisation. The positive result was attributed to "landmark" enterprise sales wins, the successful acquisition and integration of Sydney's Interpath, and the consolidation in the hosting market that has seen many competitors such as Intel Online Services drop out of the market.

Cipher signs Getronics

Australian-owned IT security product developer Cipher Communications has signed up Getronics as its national service provider. Cipher develops and manufacturers IT security products such as firewalls, PKI and encryption technology and biometrics. Getronics will now manage the installation and management of several of these products, as well as providing remote help-desk and onsite engineering support. The partnership essentially allows the two companies the ability to offer IT security as a managed service.

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