Desktop Linux developer Xandros will use its Australian success as a model for expansion into the Asian market.
"Australia seems to be a very Linux-friendly country," said chairman and CTO Rick Berenstein.
The company, which was established in 2001 using the desktop Linux distribution originally developed by Corel, has nearly 50 local resellers, though it hasn't yet established a full operation down under.
Despite lacking the visibility of more prominent players such as Red Hat and SUSE, Berenstein said the company was pleased with current market activity in Australia.
Building partnerships with the channel and OEMs across the region will be critical to Xandros' expansion from its current American and European markets into Asia.
"We are continuing our push for partners and OEMs on an international basis," said Berenstein. "Linux is a very large market, especially when looked at globally."
While US desktop Linux usage is widely predicted to peak at around 10 percent, the worldwide share for Linux could rise as high as 45 percent, Berenstein predicted, making expansion beyond North America a priority. "There are some obvious challenges there, but there are ways of getting into the market with minimal risk."
Speaking at LinuxWorld 2004 in San Francisco, Berenstein outlined Xandros' product roadmap for the next two years, which includes the release later this year of a Linux server OS, expanding from the company's desktop roots. Version 3 of the Xandros desktop is due in 2005.
Disclosure: Angus Kidman attended LinuxWorld as a guest of IBM.