Centura to Heighten Asian Profile

SINGAPORE (05/23/2000) - Centura Software Corp. (formerly Gupta), best known for its SQL (structured query language) products, is rising from the ashes, and is set to launch new products and services in the region focused on mobile connectivity.

"Over the last couple of years, we've had a very low profile," said John Armenakas, managing director, Centura Software. "We started turning around financially a couple of years ago, and now we want to re-engage customers in the region."

The company intends to concentrate on extending customers client/server systems to the Web and personal digital assistants.

"The PC era is coming to an end and bandwidth will take over," said Armenakas.

"Companies will be required to move enterprise applications to the Internet and handhelds."

To facilitate this goal, Centura last week launched its Centura Team Developer (CTD) 2000 and eSNAPP products in Singapore.

CTD (formerly SQL Windows) is an application development tool, and the 2000 edition allows the user to create visual, object-oriented Internet server applications which can render content in HTML, XML, style sheets, JavaScript, and cookies. eSNAPP is server centric application server which allows real-time content to be extended to handheld devices including the Palm, Windows CE, and WAP (wireless application protocol) platforms.

For example, Centura has already worked with software company SAP to push mySAP.com customer relationship management applications to handheld devices.

"With these two new tools, we will drive e-business and information appliance solutions throughout Asia-Pacific," said Armenakas.

Centura is also boosting its support structure in an effort to increase its regional profile.

"Just last month, we started building a consulting organization for our customers called Centura Solutions," said Armenakas. "This is a pool of senior level consultants who will work with customers directly to help them move from client/server to the Web and beyond."

The company currently has three people handling Asia-Pacific, but is expected to have 10 by the end of the year.

These consultants will also provide support for Centura's distributors.

"We will also need to have value added partners who are good in e-business," Armenakas said. "In Southeast Asia, we have Malaysia-based Software Alliance, which is currently looking to establish a physical presence in Singapore, as well as to look for sub-distributors."

By doing so, Centura expects to grow tenfold by 2002.

"Currently, 1.9 percent of Centura's revenue is in Asia," said Armenakas. "In three years time, we expect the region to represent 10 to 12 percent. We had a good start last quarter, and grew by 40 percent here."

Locally, Centura counts Singapore Telecom and Singapore Airlines as its customers.

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