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UPDATE: Viaken Lassoes Sun in Co-Marketing Deal for New Informatics Suite

SAN DIEGO, Oct. 27 – Sun Microsystems and Viaken Systems have entered into a preliminary agreement to develop and market a new suite of Viaken products, GenomeWeb learned on Friday.  

The potential deal, which is open-ended and non-exclusive, is anticipated to close in the current quarter, a Viaken spokesman said at the 13th annual Genome Sequencing and Analysis Conference, held here through Sunday.

The collaboration calls for Sun, of Palo Alto, Calif., to help Viaken develop and market a new line of informatics products, called Paragon, atop Sun’s E series hardware, said Michael Provance, Viaken’s vice president of discovery solutions.  

Sun’s Siamak Zadeh, group marketing manager for life sciences, said the deal represents an expansion of Sun’s partnership program. “For us to be a player in this space, we have to collaborate with solution providers,” Zadeh told GenomeWeb .

The deal with Viaken involves co-promotions, co-sponsorship of events, and testing the applications on Sun platforms, according to Zadeh. It also involved a “certain level of investment” from Sun, said Zadeh, including resources for testing, marketing, and co-development. 

Financial details of the partnership were not disclosed. 

Viaken plans to sell the informatics suite in the United States, Europe, and Japan. It has not yet been determined which company will be responsible for marketing the suite in the different regions, although Viaken, which is based in Gaithersburg, Md., with offices in the UK, will be the primary distributor. 

Provance said that the company hopes to launch the first product in the suite, a genomic-discovery platform, in the first quarter of 2002. Other product installments, which will be rolled out through 2003, will include tools for data visualization, data mining, and project management. 

“Sun has got the architecture we need to get this done,” Provance said at his booth four aisles from Sun’s. “This is the beginning of a much larger relationship.”

He added that Viaken has several other deals lined up for closure in either the current or next quarter.  

In July,  Viaken partnered with e-science platform provider InforSense  to market and distribute its large-scale genomic analysis and drug-discovery platform.  

As GenomeWeb  reported, the platform, called the Kensington Discovery Edition, was developed by UK-based InforSense as networked-based software for data mining and analysis.  

Terms of that agreement were not disclosed. 

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