Novell spinoff eyes local market

Novell spinoff Volera has begun its foray into the Australian content networking market, complete with a pocketful ofcash from Nortel and Accenture.

The three companies have ploughed $US83 million into the Volera venture, and although Simon Khalaf, president ofVolera, says that they are all in for the long haul, he is confident they'll see a return on investment in the next twoto three years. Having only been in the US market since February 2001, the company has already acquired a 17 per centslice of the caching and content networking market.

Hedging its bets on forecasts that the global content networking market will be worth $22 billion by 2004, the companyis solely focusing on content flow management, with the aim of making Net content available at a speed similar totelevision.

"Until it can offer TV broadcast quality, the Internet is still really under construction," Khalaf said.

The decision to set up operations in the Australia was largely due to the region holding "big promise", and the companywill go head-to-head with the likes of Network Appliance on the local front. Glen Jobson, general manager of VoleraAsia Pacific, also believes that the technology climate here makes content delivery issues particularly relevant.

"The increased use of streaming and rich media content, combined with a comparatively high cost of telecommunicationsand relatively low connectivity performance in Australia, makes improved network performance even more of an issue herethan in some other markets," he said.

Volera will be aiming to educate the market locally about the benefits that could be derived from a dedicated ContentDelivery Network (CDN), according to Jobson. While it's fine to fatten up the pipes and filter end-user activity toeliminate bandwidth-hungry activity, Jobson believes that companies need to instead move content around where it isneeded, in an effort to enhance server performance.

"We're here to educate people to understand why they need caching and CDN systems, the benefits associated with it, andwhy it makes sense to isolate the content acceleration function and employ a dedicated solution to handle nothing butcontent acceleration and associated processes," he said.

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