Corel Corporation is a world leader in the development of graphics and multimedia software. Founded in June 1985 by Michael COWPLAND, the company is now Canada's largest software developer and ranks second to Microsoft for application software companies worldwide. Corel is a pioneer premier supplier of software on CD-ROM technology and dominates over 80% of the Windows-based illustration market in the US. Corel employs 1300 people worldwide and generated sales in 1998 of $247 million.
Originally engaged in the systems integration business by combining various hardware and software products, Corel became an important supplier of turnkey PC-based desktop publishing systems and local area networks. In January 1989, the company introduced its first version of CorelDRAW. They secured a leading market position for illustration software by 1991, and began an innovative marketing strategy. With the release of CorelDRAW 3.0 in May 1992, the development cycle for new releases was shortened to 12 months instead of the 18 to 24 months typical of competitors.
As successive versions of CorelDRAW were released in 1993, 1994 and 1995, the product evolved into a comprehensive graphics suite. There are now 17 different language versions of CorelDRAW available worldwide with close to 4 million users.
On 1 March 1996 Corel acquired Novell's business applications division, becoming the world's second-largest independent vendor of personal productivity applications. The WordPerfect family of software programs includes a powerful office productivity suite of programs containing WordPerfect 6.1, Corel Quattro Pro 6.0, Corel Presentations 3.0, Corel Flow 2, Sidekick TM , Netscape Navigator, Dashboard, Corel Screen Saver, Envoy, Typographic fonts and clipart images. The acquisition of the WordPerfect product suite gives Corel an installed base of 20 million users. The most recent release of CorelWEB.GALLERY and CorelWEB.DATA address the rapidly expanding Internet marketplace.
Corel's products are consistently rated among the strongest in the industry and its flagship product CorelDRAW has won over 230 International awards from major trade publications. The company ships its products through a network of more than 160 distributors in 60 countries worldwide. The company has one of the largest advertising budgets in the industry. As an enhancement to their brand name recognition, they were selected as the world title sponsor of the Women's Tennis Association Tour and also purchased the Palladium in Ottawa, now called the Corel Centre.
Corel sponsors an annual World Design Contest for the best designs created by designers and artists using Corel products. In 1999 the 8 grand prize winners and the best of show winner received a total of US$260 000 in prizes.