Corel hatches licensing agreements of its own

Seizing upon negative market response to Microsoft's latest software licensing changes, Corel has announced a special trial offer of its WordPerfect 10 product for Microsoft Enterprise Agreement holders.

Corel sales director for Asia-Pacific, Gavin Watson, says the purpose of the trial promotion is to give dissatisfied Microsoft Enterprise Agreement holders the opportunity to test an alternative product on terms "they can appreciate". Terms of the promotion will vary according to the needs of the enterprise customer, but could involve preferred pricing on licences, training and support, and transition services.

The trial offer also coincides with the launch of Corel's new licensing program across its range of products and services.

Corel's licensing program will now be divided into two licensing options. The Corel Transactional Licence (CTL) option allows customers to purchase Corel products and services through individual transactions on a no-contract basis, and Corel's Contractual Licence (CLL) is designed for customers purchasing products by volume in combination with support and service offerings. CLL holders will be required to sign up for at least one year. Both options promise to give customers discounted prices for software, depending on the number of licences and products purchased at a single point in time.

For an additional tier-based fee, customers can also have access to Corel's maintenance service, which promises software updates for up to two years after the maintenance sign-up date.

Corel marketing manager Julianne Bean says the decision to revamp the licensing schemes was necessary after the company's acquisitions of Micrografx in October 2001 and SoftQuad in March 2002.

"Corel had to consolidate three different companies' licensing programs to make it simple and easy for the reseller and the end user alike to license Corel products," she said.

Corel's licensing changes are applicable from 1 August and apply to all of the company's software products and services. The trial offer to MS Enterprise users will end 31 October.

Dissatisfaction surrounding Microsoft's new Licensing 6.0 agreement is centred around a new clause which requires users to sign up to a Software Assurance scheme and upgrade their software regularly, or else pay the full cost of a licence each time they want to upgrade to a new product. The new Microsoft plans, which took affect on 1 August, also require customers to pay an annuity licence fee for the life of the software contract.

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