Briefs: November 1, 2004


"Sales this quarter again exceeded our expectations and were led by record sales of our communications products vendors: Avaya, Intel and NEC," said Mike Baur, president and CEO of ScanSource. "We were pleasantly surprised at the continued strength of AIDC/ POS sales coming off record sales results in the June quarter."

ScanSource also launched a new business unit focused on security solutions.

ScanSource Security Distribution will have its own sales and merchandising teams and its own president, according to the company.

John Gaillard has been named president of the unit. He most recently served as vice president of sales and business development for ScanSource's Catalyst Telecom business.

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ScanSource Security Distribution will offer products and solutions covering access control, surveillance, intrusion and fire-related issues. The unit will focus on hardware distribution and does not plan to enter the monitoring side of the business, said Baur.

IBM last week updated several of its application development life-cycle management tools as part of its ongoing On Demand marketing campaign.

The tools are designed to extend the working life of legacy applications running on most platforms by bringing those tasks into the emerging world of services-oriented architectures.

One of the offerings, CICS Interdependency Analyzer, automatically detects runtime resource relationships in CICS mainframe systems and records the results in DB2 databases, according to IBM.

There's also a new point release of WebSphere Studio Enterprise Developer (WSED). The company said version 5.1.2 provides a common workbench and tools for application development, testing and deployment, whether they're relatively new J2EE applications or older, big-iron apps written in COBOL or P/I.

The WSED upgrade is available now and starts at $5,500 per server. Also on the IBM docket is CICS VSAM Recovery 3.3, designed for accessing multiple z/OS or OS/390 application sessions from a single terminal, starting at $1,372 per CPU.

Nortel Networks said it wouldn't be able to file financial restatements to correct accounting irregularities by the end of October as originally expected.

The company said it now plans to file financial statements for the year 2003 and the first and second quarters of 2004 by mid-November. As a result, Nortel won't be able to file third-quarter 2004 results by the required November deadlines in compliance with certain U.S. and Canadian securities regulations, and won't be able to comply with obligations under debt indentures.

Nortel continues to work on the restatement of results for each quarter in 2003 and for 2002 and 2001. The company, which has been the target of regulatory and criminal probes, expects to report preliminary results for the latest third quarter by the end of November and to file financial statements for that period in mid-December.

Solution provider Ikon's sales and income for its most recent financial quarter declined from the same quarter a year earlier but matched analysts' expectations, as it saw gains in services and sales of document solutions.

The company said sales for its fourth quarter ended Sept. 30 reached $1.17 billion, compared with $1.2 billion for the year-ago quarter. The company reported a $26 million profit, compared with $32 million for the same period a year ago.

Matthew Espe, Ikon's chairman and CEO, said the quarterly results reflect a series of slow summer months as well as a bid by the company to aggressively price deals in an effort to win new business. Espe also said the period saw the company win a record number of new customers.

During the quarter, Ikon embarked on a new integrated solution portfolio of document management services in its Enterprise Services unit, partnering with several other vendors including EMC's Documentum unit. The company's executives said they view that direction as a promising source of future revenue.

Gateway posted a narrower third-quarter loss last Thursday as its acquisition of eMachines boosted sales, and the company said the fourth quarter may produce its first profit in three years.

The company reported a loss of $56.5 million during the three months ended Sept. 30, compared with a loss of $136.1 million for the same period last year.

Revenue rose 3.7 percent to $915 million from $883 million last year. The company shipped 931,000 PCs during the quarter, up 67 percent from the same period last year.

"While there's still much work ahead, we're definitely on the right track," said Wayne Inouye, Gateway president and CEO. "In the third quarter, executing on the basics led to accelerated cost savings and gross margin improvements across all segments."