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Interview with Mike Cowpland, Corel CEO

the concept of application service providers. What are Corel's plans?

We are doing that too. We have an offering for ASP's as that provides very low

cost of ownership.

Does Corel plan to sell computers with Linux and Corel apps preinstalled?

No we would rather work with partners to do that.

There have been some controversies about the Corel Linux licensing which wasn't

100% GPL?

Even Richard Stallman has been happy with our license. Being a big commercial

company, we have to be more careful of copyright than other smaller companies.

We had certain terms, which had to be introduced to ensure that everything was


Will Corel support other free operating systems in the future?

No. We think it is important to focus on Linux, as it is clearly the one.

There were some talks about Red Hat taking over Corel, is that going to happen?

No, I don't think they would do that, because Red Hat is a much smaller company

than Corel. They have only 40-50 developers where as we have got 800

developers. We understand the Windows market, Red Hat does not.

What if it happens?

It is not going to happen (laughs).

If you had a choice to be taken over by a company, which company would you


None (laughs).

How does Corel plan to make money out of the open source model?

Corel has always been known to offer enormous value for money and thereby the

paradigm suits us very well. If you put a software in a box along with a manual

, it typically costs between 50 and 100 US$ and that's what an upgrade sells

for. It is really no different to our Windows model. The only difference is

that you get a good CD in the market with free downloads and that's why we

have had 2 million Word Perfect downloads, the number one rate of free

download of Corel Linux.

In my point of view, it is very similar to the Windows model. It goes even

faster and you still make money on the boxes because some people don't want to

wait for the downloads. They want the CD and the manuals or they want the

extra bells and whistles such as the high level of support or may be some more

bells and whistles such as content. For example, on our Web site we have 50,000

images but if you want to access 2 million then you have to join up and pay

30 US$ a year as subscription. So it fits into a subscription model. We are