Replanted Acorn starts to grow againThe following document is reproduced by kind permission of The Times Interface section, November 6, 1996
ACORN, assigned to the scrapheap by some observers a year ago, has a brighter future than at any time in the past five years, says Peter Bondar, its technical director.
Addressing a presentation at the Acorn World exhibition at Olympia in London, Bondar said: "The company is stronger, spending more than ever on research and development and has earned worldwide credibility."
He said the change in fortunes of the Cambridge-based company, always associated with educational computers, resulted from links with major players in the industry and from the success of its newly-created Acorn Risc Technologies division.
Earlier this year, Acorn signed deals with Oracle to develop and licence a range of network computing reference designs and with Apple to market IT solutions to British schools.
The technology division has entered agreements with the Korean Government and several European and American companies and teamed up with Orange and Strathclyde University to announce a video-conferencing mobile phone yesterday.
The division also produced the StrongARM processor card, bought by half the 4,000 Acorn enthusiasts targeted and now on general sale. The card can make Acorn Risc PCs work five times faster, provides better performance and can carry out several functions simultaneously.
Bondar told Interface: "Like the prostitute, we are prepared to do business with anyone and this change in our culture has brought its rewards. Just as Porsche engineers carry out design contracts for mass-market cars, we are eager to develop our sophisticated ideas for popular applications."