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New partner program for IT service companies in the US

Tuesday January 18 2005

Mandrakesoft announced today a new partner program for US companies offering Linux products and services to small and mid-sized business customers. The Mandrakelinux Solution Provider Program is designed to support IT services companies in offering the benefits of open source to a mainstream audience through technical and marketing support.

IT services companies are signing up around the country to participate in the program. "We've had a very positive response so far," says Maria Winslow, Program Manager at Mandrakesoft. "Partners are telling us that their customers are requesting more Linux products and services, and they want help making the transition. That's exactly the goal of this partner program - to help increase sales through Linux offerings."

Franck Goron, President and founder of e-angel in Washington, DC, was one of the first IT services companies to sign on to the new program. For Goron, developing a close relationship with a Linux vendor was important in his decision to join the program. "I feel like they really understand the Linux market from my perspective," says Goron. "and that they will be there when we need help with technical or marketing issues. I expect this relationship will help us expand our business in 2005."

The new program provides marketing and sales support, privileged second-tier technical support, and the option to order pre-installed systems. Partners get a dedicated contact to help with customer questions about Linux and open source software, plus a collection of marketing tools to assist with promotion. The company has also set up a technical support team that is dedicated exclusively to program members for the highest level of support.

Advent Consulting, an IT services company in the Boston area, joined the program because of the focus on the SMB market. According to CEO David Lee, "With this program, Mandrakesoft is delivering a range of practical Linux-based solutions specifically tailored to the needs of small and mid-sized organizations, allowing Advent Consulting to deliver comprehensive open source products and services to our customers that work in an integrated and streamlined fashion."

As part of the new program, the company is introducing a new line of practical Linux servers, called the Mandrakelinux Dedicated Server Series, tailored to the needs of mainstream small and mid-sized business customers. These server offerings are designed to be easy to migrate from Windows, and are only available from official Mandrakelinux Solution Providers.

Mandrakesoft has two introductory servers in the series - the Mandrakelinux Dedicated File Server and the Mandrakelinux Dedicated Email Gateway with spam and virus filtering. Pricing for each server is $750, with no CPU or client access restrictions. These products represent the practical, affordable choice for small and mid-sized IT environments.

According to Winslow, "We know that small and mid-sized business customers want practical solutions at a good price, not expensive operating systems that include everything but the kitchen sink. We're filling in a gap in the SMB market by providing solution-based products and supporting local service providers as they make the transition to a truly mainstream Linux market."

Companies interested in participating in the Mandrakelinux Solution Provider Program should contact Maria Winslow at (919) 968-7802, or send email to "uspartner at mandrakesoft dot com" to request more information.

About Mandrakesoft

Widely known as the most user-friendly Linux provider, Mandrakesoft provides a trusted interface between users of information technology and open source technologists. Mandrakelinux is the first choice for practical and affordable Linux solutions in real-world settings. Founded in 1998 with a mission to create a user-friendly Linux, Mandrakesoft quickly grew to be a leading global name in Linux solutions. Mandrakelinux is distributed in 140 countries in 68 languages, with installations numbering 4-6 million worldwide.

Media Contacts
Mandrakesoft - Maria Winslow ,919-968-7802, mwinslow@mandriva.com
e-angel LLC - Franck Goron, 202- 448-8924
Advent Consulting - David Lee, 617-444-8770