Compaq, NEC Invest in Open-Source Player

SAN FRANCISCO (08/24/2000) - With investors continuing to flock toward the open-source platform, Lutris Technologies Inc. managed this week to secure US$16 million in funding from a variety of high-profile companies.

Compaq Computer Corp., NEC Corp. and Deutsche Banc Alex. Brown invested unspecified amounts in Lutris, a Santa Cruz, California-based provider of open-source software and services, in the first phase of its third external round of financing, according to a statement from Lutris. Existing investors in Lutris who also contributed to the third round of financing include Chase Capital and Intel 64 Fund, both of which helped Lutris raise $10 million in financing in December of last year.

Best known for its Enhydra open-source Internet application server, Lutris said that it plans to use the capital raised to further promote its software as well as continue development efforts for the product in the areas of wireless, Java, and XML (extensible markup language) support. Lutris provides the Enhydra server -- released in January of 1999 -- along with customer support, product training and technical documentation.

The most basic form of the Enhydra engine is available at no charge.

Application servers, such as the Lutris product, take on a crucial role for most Web commerce sites. The servers run applications in a middle tier that enjoys protection from client Web browsers and back-end databases. IT groups may benefit from this form of insulation as it becomes easier to add application server copies and increased numbers of computers.

In the agreement with Compaq, the software vendor will integrate Enhydra with the Compaq ProLiant, Alpha, and Tru64 platforms. Lutris plans to join the Compaq Solutions Alliance (CSA) and establish the ProLiant servers as the reference platform for the Enhydra. The two companies also plan to collaborate on various Web and wireless offerings based on the open-source model.

NEC's collaboration with Lutris involves slightly different goals. The vendors are contemplating a plan to push Lutris products and services in the Japanese market, the Lutris statement said.

Lutris, based in Santa Cruz, California, can be reached at +1-831-471-9753 or Compaq, in Houston, Texas, can be reached at +1-281-380-0670 or NEC Corp., in Tokyo, can be found online at

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