Corel Upgrades Flagship Software

For years, Corel has labored in the long shadows of Microsoft and Adobe Systems in the productivity and graphics-applications space. And yet, the Canadian software veteran seems to embrace its underdog status, fancying itself a technology respite for smaller firms that balk at paying the big guys' licensing fees.

"We believe we are positioned as the leading alternative to Microsoft Office," says Jason Larock, product director for Corel's WordPerfect product line. "They own 90 percent of the market. But inside the other 10 percent, we own 96 percent of that space."

Such sentiment certainly doesn't lack for confidence. This week, Corel is rolling out major upgrades to its flagship products, WordPerfect 13 and CorelDraw Graphics Suite X3. The new products incorporate a slew of new features, according to the company. CorelDraw sports overhauled PowerTrace and PhotoPaint functionality, while WordPerfect has a redesigned user interface that looks more like Windows XP. WordPerfect will also now be able to publish PDF-format files from the entire suite, a feature that Microsoft Office will not be capable of until Office 12 is released later this year.

Corel is also upping its commitment to its channel partners, which now number 5,200 in North America, by introducing a deal-registration program, increasing its product-marketing assistance and rolling out a lead-licensing system. The lead-licensing initiative will see Corel work a customer sale until it's 80 percent complete; then the company will hand it off to a partner that closes the deal and has an opportunity to upsell and provide hardware services, according to Fiaaz Walji, director of channel sales.

Sponsored post