Following the debut of its DataFire family of ISDN LAN adaptors and RightSwitch, a 10Mb/sec internal Ethernet switch, Digi International, the US-based manufacturer of connectivity solutions, is opening a Sydney office. Digi, which is distributed in Australia by Sealcorp, Omega, T Data and Computer Integration Solutions, will start its Sydney office with a small staff and expand as necessary, said Bob Poorman, Digi's vice-president of international operations. A local managing director is expected to be named soon.
"When we told our distributors that we were going to open an office here, we had to convince a couple of them we weren't trying to get our foot in the door so we could begin selling direct," Poorman said. "But we assured them that's not the case. Our model here is reliant on distributors adding value and tailoring our products to the local market. It's also a matter of resources. To even think about selling direct, we'd need to make a major, major investment in staff. Our distributors eliminate the need for that." The Sydney office joins other new Digi offices in Hong Kong, Beijing and Tokyo, Poorman said.
Richard Monseth, Digi's director of business development, says the company has identified the remote access, multi-user and LAN connect markets as its major areas of concentration and its distributors reflect that. "Sealcorp focuses on remote access for us. T Data concentrates on multi-user, and Omega focuses on networking. That's a little bit of a generalisation, but that's it in a nutshell," he told Australian Reseller News.
Although, traditionally, the multi-user market has accounted for the sizeable majority of Digi's business - with LAN connect and remote access a distant second and third - the company's main target in the here and now is remote access. "By 1997 our goal is to grow our remote access business to the point that it accounts for 38 per cent of our overall business; multi-user 34 per cent; and LAN connect for 28 per cent," Poorman said. Poorman compared these numbers to 1994 Digi statistics where multi-user accounted for 72 per cent, LAN connect for 15 per cent and remote access for 13 per cent. "Currently, we're about halfway there," he said.
On the networking side, Monseth says Digi's DataFire family of servers allows users of Microsoft and Novell operating systems to use features such as routing, data compression and security. "These adaptors help companies achieve additional utility from existing Microsoft and Novell servers by equipping them with remote communications capability," he said.
Currently available in Australia, Digi's DataFire S/T client has a list price of $746, the DataFire S/T server lists for $1,250 and the DataFire/4 S/T server lists for $4,513. All prices exclude tax. The Microsoft Windows 95 drivers are available immediately from both Digi's Web site (http://www.digi.com) and Microsoft's Web site (http://www.microsoft.com/windows).
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