F5 Networks Sets Up Shop in Asia

SINGAPORE (05/10/2000) - Expecting the region to experience a greater flurry in e-business, F5 Networks Inc. last week set up its regional headquarters in Singapore to strengthen its position in Asia-Pacific.

Nasdaq-listed F5 Networks provides integrated Internet traffic and content management applications to help companies scale the Internet economy.

Forecasting a 87 percent growth in online purchasing from emerging markets through 2003, the company is bent on capturing much of that growth, said Leigh Wilson, Asia-Pacific managing director, F5 Networks.

As such, the newly-minted office here will drive much of the marketing and sales initiatives in the region, as well as provide technical support to its customers and partners, Wilson said.

According to Wilson, the company intends to pump about US$4 million into building up its infrastructure and manpower base in the region, where it currently has 14 staff members. F5 Networks intends to increase that number to 39, with 15 based in Singapore, and the remaining in its other offices in Hong Kong, Japan and Korea.

Previously, F5 Networks relied on its distribution channels such as Japan's NTT and Singapore Technologies, to stake its presence in Asia. The company assures its Asian partners that it will continue to maintain its commitment to them.

"We will continue to work with them as they have the most valuable experience, depth of knowledge, and infrastructural expertise in local networks," Wilson added.

To meet the rapidly changing needs and expectations of its customers, F5 Networks will also look into developing its product portfolio, to enhance its product performance, as well as to broaden its strategic alliances in Asia.

Wilson said that the company is currently evaluating a number of possible partnerships but declined to reveal names.

F5 Networks' flagship products are BIG/IP and 3DNS Controller, which it expects to enjoy significant growth this year, he said. BIG/IP is a suite of applications that monitor network components from Layer 2 to Layer 7 of the OSI model, including features such as fault tolerance, directory and authentication, and load balancing. 3DNS Controller is an intelligent load balancing server with built-in security protection features against common attacks.

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