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Four U.S. Developers Sign Japan Distribution Deals

This has been a busy week for cross-border Internet-related distribution agreements, with four US developers announcing deals with five major Japanese firms.

Washington-based WatchGuard Technologies, a leading provider of Internet security solutions, has signed distribution agreements with both Fuji Xerox and Hitachi.

On August 13, WatchGuard announced that its WatchGuard LiveSecurity System, which enables companies to easily install, configure, monitor, and update their Internet security, is now available in Japan through Fuji Xerox's Network Business Unit.

This specialized Fuji Xerox sales, marketing, and engineering group supplies networking solutions from foreign companies, such as Nortel and 3Com, to businesses, schools, and government agencies throughout Japan.

"Many of our customers use the Internet on a daily basis, and they are looking for a comprehensive solution that enables them to safely exchange information without becoming a security expert," said Toshiyuki Hiramatsu, general manager of Fuji Xerox's Network Business Unit.

Just four days later, on August 17, WatchGuard followed up by announcing that Softbank Corp., one of Japan's largest packaged software and hardware distributors, will also market the product.

Ken Miyauchi, a Softbank executive vice president, said WatchGuard LiveSecurity "is the kind of solution that businesses in Japan are looking for -- high-quality, long-term protection that is easy to install and efficient to maintain."

Part of the WatchGuard LiveSecurity System is a broadcast service that proactively transmits security updates to subscribers over the Internet.

"The LiveSecurity Broadcast Service is an innovative feature that combats the emergence of new security threats and addresses the concerns our customers have about remaining protected," said Miyauchi.

On August 16, Massachusetts-based StarBurst Software announced a major distributor agreement with a Hitachi Ltd. subsidiary.

Under the agreement, Hitachi Information Technology (Hitachi- IT) will market, sell, and support OmniCast, StarBurst's content distribution management solution that enables the efficient, simultaneous distribution of e-business and Web content to thousands of destinations over any IP network, including intranets and the Internet.

Hitachi-IT will integrate OmniCast with its own "With IT-SAT1" Satellite Router.

"Adding StarBurst's OmniCast to our already extensive product range provides tremendous benefits to our customers who require reliable, simultaneous content distribution management," said Yoshiaki Tada, Hitachi-IT's chief engineer of system development.

Also on August 16, Colorado-based eSoft Inc. said that trading giant Tomen Corp. will distribute its TEAM Internet appliances in Japan.

Tomen will sell the Linux-based TEAM line of Internet access solutions, which enable secure, low-cost LAN-to-Internet connectivity for up to 200 workstations, through both direct sales and reseller channels.

"More and more smaller Japanese businesses [are] looking for an Internet connectivity solution," said Hiroshi Morimoto, director and general manager of Tomen's Electronics and Media Business office.

"The TEAM Internet product line allows us to offer our customers a full suite of Internet features."

And finally, Hewlett-Packard Co. announced on August 18 that NEC Corp. will distribute HP OpenView NetMetrix network-performance-monitoring software in Japan.

"This relationship strengthens NetMetrix's remote-monitoring market presence in Japan," said Anita Manwani, general manager of HP's NetMetrix Division.

Under the terms of the agreement, HP will license to NEC a Japanese-version master CD of the entire portfolio of HP OpenView NetMetrix software.

NEC will offer the product as a system- and network-management solution for users of its HP-UX-based NX7000 servers.

"With this agreement, NEC's SystemScope will be greatly enhanced in the network-management area," said Yukio Ebino, general manager of NEC's Middle Software Division.



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