Innovative Korean technology companies are becoming leading players and stealing market share from the giants
Global technology giants, such as Microsoft, IBM, Oracle and SAP, have for decades dominated the enterprise software market. With an access to capital and a love for risk-taking, it's no surprising that these giants are US companies. Tech companies outside of North America have previously tried to grab a slice of the market, but they are often left empty handed. If you are seen as a true rival to such huge players, more often than not you are gobbled up and bought-out before having a chance to make it big.
However, increasingly one country is producing companies that are being seen as true contenders and rivals to the traditional oligopoly of big players. That country is South Korea.
In a recent study, based on factors including R&D intensity, productivity, high-tech density, and manufacturing capabilities, South Korea was ranked first in the Global Innovation Index. In the recent past South Korea was often compared to third world countries in terms of wealth and resources, especially after the ravages of war, but it has now transformed itself into a technology hub that produces highly successful technology companies with big plans of globalisation.
South Korean enterprise software provider TmaxSoft is one example of a company that is already making a significant impact in the market. Joe Kim, UK Managing Director, comments: "Although we are competing with the powerhouses, we have already made substantial headway in our own native market. Since 2003 we've retained 40 per cent of the web application server market with our product JEUS - this has made us true market leaders."
Kim continues: "Competing in a very crowded market can be tough, but we've demonstrated it's not impossible. We're helping to put South Korea on the map as an innovative technology country.
"One of our main products, OpenFrame, is a re-hosting solution designed to migrate applications from the mainframe to UNIX systems. In South Korea, it has been adopted by the likes of Samsung Insurance, LIG Insurance, and Nomura Securities in Japan. We want to replicate this outside of Asia. To do this, we have expanded our footprint and opened offices in America, Latin America, Europe, and most recently in London. We believe that there is real potential for companies, like ourselves from South Korea, to make a big impact in the European market. We can offer real market changing technology as well as a refreshing and honest approach to working successfully with partners and customers. There are obviously very massive challenges in working in the same market as the traditional major players, but our experience in our home market has shown that making inroads, and indeed securing a majority market share, is possible.
"The major players have had the market to themselves for sometime now; perhaps, with real competition coming out of new markets such as South Korea, it will make them sit up and listen to the market, which has to be a good thing for everyone."
NOTES TO EDITORS
About TmaxSoft - a global provider of agile and robust system software solutions
TmaxSoft (founded in 1997), with its domestically developed enterprise software solutions, competes with global software powerhouses that used to dominate the Korean software market. Since 2003, TmaxSoft has been the market leader in the Korean WAS (web application server) market surpassing global software powerhouses such as IBM and Oracle. With successful introduction of multiple solutions such as JEUS (a web application server), TIBERO RDBMS (a database management solution), ProFrame (an application framework), and OpenFrame (a mainframe rehosting solution), TmaxSoft has grown to be the only Korean supplier of total enterprise solutions. Based on the high level of technology secured through 17 years of continued R&D activities and our distinctive customer-oriented technical support, TmaxSoft strives to become a global software powerhouse using its innovation-driven technology.
Andrew Chatterton / Lily Ingrey
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