SGI buys VRML tool maker Paragraph

Silicon Graphics Inc. on Wednesday made two moves to strengthen its Internet software strategies.

The company bought ParaGraph International Inc., a leading vendor of VRML and three-dimensional software tools, and created a new software business unit to manage it.

SGI will fold ParaGraph's tools into its existing line and will gain access to some of ParaGraph's biggest customers, including Disney Online and the Microsoft Network, said SGI officials.

Terms of the buyout were not disclosed. ParaGraph is based in Campbell, Calif., and last year reported nearly $6.2 million in revenues, up nearly 50 percent from 1995. Sales for 1997 are projected to be $12 million, said ParaGraph officials.

The ParaGraph technology and products will be managed by SGI's newly formed COSMO Software business unit, which will be responsible for creating VRML, 3D, audio and video software for multiple platforms, said officials.