Corel issues profits warning

Corel will report a net loss of approximately $32 million for its third fiscal quarter on September 24, blaming slow summer retail sales of its WordPerfect Suite and CorelDraw.

With orders worth in the region of $96 million and revenues of $54 million for the quarter, the loss has come as a bit of a surprise to City analysts, although Corel admits to having a large excess in its product inventory due to the sales slump.

Corel president and chief executive Dr Michael Cowpland said in a prepared statement that "Over the last three quarters we have been repositioning the company from its retail focus to an expanded concentration on the corporate marketplace." Corel claims that corporate sales have grown by almost 35 per cent this year.

Cowpland said that the shift away from retail would eventually put the firm back on track, as would Corel's Java initiatives and the roll out of WordPerfect Suite 8.