Bulgaria News Briefs: LAN Market Hits US$8.41M

SOFIA (07/17/2000) - The LAN (Local Area Network) hardware market in Bulgaria, defined by International Data Corp. (IDC) as including NICs (New Internet Computers), hubs, switches, routers and RAS (Remote Access Servers), totaled US$8.41 million last year, compared to $5.58 million in 1998.

The number of NICs sold last year was 24,004, up 9 percent from the previous year. Due to lower prices, revenue decreased 3 percent. 3Com Corp. dominated the market with 51.2 percent of shipments and 62.6 percent of value. In terms of shipments 3Com was followed by D-Link Networks Inc. and Planet with 12.1 percent and 9.8 percent, respectively.

The number of hub ports sold last year was 28,729, for 8.6 percent growth. 3Com also led that segment with 52.4 percent of shipments, followed by D-Link with 21.6 percent. The number of switch ports totaled 21,726, up 96 percent with revenue increasing to $3.31 million, compared to $1.6 million in 1998. Cisco Systems Inc. led that market segment with 35.3 percent of shipments, followed by 3Com with a 29.4 percent share. Nortel Networks Corp. and Cabletron Inc. combined captured 10.9 percent or 8.6 percent of the market's value.

Sales of routers increased 42.3 percent to 824. Revenue grew 25.1 percent to $2.14 million. Cisco led with 49.6 percent of shipments, followed by 3Com with 23.2 percent. Nortel captured 9.1 percent of the market.

The number of RAS ports shipped last year totaled 3,640. 3Com led with 49.6 percent of shipments, followed by Cisco with 32.1 percent.

Netage Merges with NonArtis

The 2-year old Bulgarian Internet company Netage Solutions merged with the US firm AnonArtis with the aim of having more successful Web projects in the U.S. and Western Europe. The company specializes in Web design and interactive software and services. The company plans to be listed on the Nasdaq stock exchange within two years. The company Web site is http://www.netagedesign.com/.

Communication System Ready to Roll

The Bulgarian Health Insurance Bureau announced that its project to create a voice and data transfer infrastructure is complete. Kontrax handled the project for the bureau, which said that the infrastructure will cut long-distance telephone call costs within the country.

New Web Site Launches

Asbis Bulgaria started its own web site at http://www.asbis.bg/ to serve the local clients and dealers. The site offers advice on purchasing, technical service, marketing support and other areas. The site is connected with the company's central system for electronic business, which includes a product catalogue and a database of clients, and is accessible online.

Cabinet Announces Administrative Service Project A pilot project for administrative services "from a single place," designed for citizens and companies, will be launched in six Bulgarian regions and Sofia, the Cabinet decided. The purpose project is aimed at making it faster to order and obtain administrative services. Specialized software will be developed later for the project. Existing software will be used to start the project.

Dates Set for Second Bulgarian ConferenceThe second Bulgarian conference on electronic commerce will be Oct. 26-28 in Sofia. It is expected that the Bill on Digital Signatures will be passed by then. Conference topics will include various aspects of e-commerce and e-business in the Bulgarian business environment. The event is organized with the assistance of the Ministry of Economics and is supported by the EU. Last year, 40 percent of the participants were from the commercial sector with 19 percent from banking, and the rest from IT.

Bulgarian Company Information Now AvailableInformation from the National Statistical Institute about Bulgarian companies is now accessible at http://www.bulstat.nsi.bg/. The project was made possible by the development of the local firm Acsior. All the information will be free until September when the service will be available through subscription.

Bora Opens MS Training Center

Bora Systems, a Microsoft Corp. partner opened a MS Certified Training Center in the city of Varna, which is the third-largest Bulgarian city and the second-biggest IT market. Bora already has such a center in Sofia. The other MS Certified Training Centers are handled by ITCE and Rila Solutions.

First Telecom Bulgaria Becomes Cyclades Distributor First Telecom Bulgaria became a distributor of Cyclades Corp. on July 1. The company will concentrate efforts in offering hardware solutions for ISPs (Internet Service Providers), with a focus on Linux systems.

MobilTel Opens Another Base Station

The GSM (Global System for Mobile Communications) MobilTel opened a third base station in Sofia. The company will launch two more stations - in Plovdiv and Varna - by the end of the year.

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