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Softwarehouse Offering "Unlimited Multi-License" to Czech Government

Czech independent software vendor Software602 has offered a $1.7 million proposal to the Czech government to use its 602proPC office suite. As part of the "unlimited multi-license" agreement, the government can upgrade its software forever and can use it on an unlimited number of computers.

Under the terms of so-called "unlimited multi-license," Software602 offers its office software for unrestricted use in all government agencies--including the Czech Army and Czech Academy of Sciences. The license is constructed to be valid forever and is applicable for all future upgrades as well as for all the computers that will be purchased by government in the future.

"The price is ten times less than that of similar software from a foreign vendor," emphasized Richard Kaucky, CEO of Software602. The one foreign vendor in the Czech market is Microsoft.

Office suite 602proPC is compatible with data file formats of Microsoft Office, and can be used to treat documents created with Word or Excel. It has also excellent Internet capabilities; it enables users to publish documents in HTML format and also is designed to maintain a Web site by means of simple text editor.

"Now, when our country is entering NATO and preparing to enter the EU, we have to deal with the problem of software piracy," said Kaucky. "Office software is the segment with the worst piracy rate--there is about 70 percent of illegal office software in Czech Republic. Our offer helps to solve the situation immediately."

Kaucky also pointed out that the money saved by the government's acceptance can be used for other IT purposes--especially for subsidizing Internet access for schools, public libraries, hospitals and other institutions financed from public sources.

The Czech government currently uses Microsoft Office under the terms of Microsoft Select multi-license agreement. This agreement is going to expire in March 1999, but could be renewed.

But in this case the government, which is often criticized for its huge expenses, will have hard work to explain why it is spending money for more expensive software and rejecting the offer from a cheaper domestic manufacturer.

"This is not either-or situation," said Jiri Kofranek, aide to Czech government for information technologies. "Software602 offers a basic office suite only. The range of Microsoft products used in government agencies is significantly wider."