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SGI To Sell Maya Maker Alias, Mac Version To Continue

TMO Reports - SGI To Sell Maya Maker Alias, Mac Version To Continue

by , 8:00 AM EDT, April 16th, 2004

Silicon Graphics Inc. has agreed to sell its Alias Systems unit, makers of the Maya 3D animation and effects software, to Accel-KKR for US$57.5 million, the companies jointly announced Thursday.

Alias President Doug Walker said the sale will be good for the overall future of Alias Systems.

"This exciting new partnership enables Alias to enhance its position as the innovation leader in 3D software,"
said Walker. "Our plan is to accelerate investment in the product and service areas that provide the greatest payback for our entertainment and design customers.

"Our new partnership with Accel-KKR will facilitate this activity, providing long-term patient capital and other strategic resources to help us thrive as an independent enterprise. We believe Alias is uniquely positioned to lead and drive future innovation and, at the same time, make 3D technology more accessible to both professionals and consumers. The breadth of applications for this category of software is enormous."

Accel-KKR is a technology-focused private equity investment firm founded by venture capital firm Accel Partners and private equity firm Kohlberg Kravis Roberts and Co. Alias provides 3-D graphics technology and services primarily for film, videogame, industrial design markets.

In a prepared statment, Accel-KKR said the purchase is being made with the participation of Alias management. The sale is expected to close this quarter.

A company spokesperson told The Mac Observer (TMO) Thursday that the company is solidly committed to continuing development of Maya for the Mac platform and that the corporate sale will have no negative impact on its Mac commitment going forward. In past interviews, Maya spokespersons and company executives have told TMO that they are pleased with sales to the Mac platform, and that those sales account for a significant percentage of total Maya sales.

Toronto, Canada-based Alias has been a major player in the 3D animation and special effects market since its early days in the 1980s. Alias Systems was originally a collaboration with Wavefront Technologies. The companies merged together with SGI in 1995. A name changed took place in mid-2003.

Silicon Graphics said the Alias business had revenues of about $51.8 million and an operating profit of about $4.9 million for the nine months ended March 26. In the second-quarter, the Alias business contributed revenues of about $17.6 million and an operating profit of about $1.8 million to Silicon Group's consolidated financial results.

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