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Tue 21 Nov 2000 04:00 AM

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ASPGulf adds vertical components

Previously horizontal-only Windows application ASP, adds Oracle iHost capabilities to take on locally-developed niche vertical applications.

ASPGulf veered from its horizontal-only strategy by unveiling plans to put Oracle-based vertical applications online as the local iHost partner for that software vendor. iHost will be a full service operation where local Oracle ISVs become ASPs, according to ASPGulf CEO Duncan Watson.

The ASP model, whilst appearing to be a threat to traditional channels instead gives those VARs a unique revenue stream, Watson told CRN. “We have a 100% channel model. The reason behind this is just pure, simple business. Our model is to go to VARs, who to go to customers , who go to users. We want 30 VARs reaching 10 customers each, who have 10 users. That is 3,000 users over three years, to make a base. Otherwise your cost line never goes past the revenue line. We will triple that with a regional presence,” Watson said.

“We are not duplicating what existing VARs do well. They have existing customer relationships and product knowledge, they implement, they do the training for customers. So our thing is just providing a different mechanism for the customer here, and then the channel comes in to implement it,” Watson said.

According to Watson, the result of ASPGulf’s service is a lower cost of entry to e-commerce capabilities for companies, and a lower cost of ownership in the ongoing operation and maintenance of corporate technologies. “People save, typically, 30-50% of the costs of building and operating their technology resources on an ongoing basis. The result is a tremendous boost for companies that want to get into e-commerce but had reservations regarding the sheer investments required: and many companies in this market have been wrestling with that very issue as they tried to move to the information economy,” he said.

ASPGulf is currently raising US$12 million in development funds for new offices in Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and Bahrain.

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