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CIVILSERVE – Germany – Geotechnical calculations

The decision to convert from a code-number-based licensing system to hardware-based top security was driven by an international business expansion plan. With the integration of e-shop and CRM, customer service relationships have become closer.

At the beginning of this year, Civilserve GmbH completely converted their software protection system for their environmental engineering and special software solutions and geo-technique of software developer GGU mbh, Braunschweig in Germany. The existing licensing system, which was based on code numbers has been replaced by hardware-based WIBU-BOXes.

What are the reasons forthis change-over and why did they choose the Karlsruhe-based WIBU-SYSTEMS AG solution?

The distribution of solutions for a specialty market with relatively small numbers bears the intrinsic risk of not being able toprofitably market the license models. Onthe other hand there are the high costs of development and distribution. This risk even incalculably increases with the danger of pirated copies which deeply destroy the profitability.

If the market volume is calculable through existing market research and many years of distribution experiences, license revenues missing through pirate copies can predictably damage the companies.

Legal prosecution of the software piratesis too much an effort for small software companies. Moreover, aggressive behavior might deter potential customers from legally acquiring the licenses.

For these reasons, software protection and Digital Rights Management (DRM) have become an important topic for small-scale enterprises in the range of software development.

The change-over from a code number-based to the WIBU-KEY hardware-based software protection took place for two major reasons. There was the difficulty to administer multiple licenses and the reorientation of the software spectrum on the international market. Moreover, with this conversion many customer needs were met. In the past, former employees of a software customer occasionally used the licenses illegally and in this way worked on orders in competition with their former employer.

But the decisive factor for the deploymentof the WIBU-BOXes as software protection was a medium-term business objective ofthe Civilserve GmbH – international distribution. The international distribution will be achieved via a B2B shop system for local specialized dealers in each respective country. As a result, the expenses for distribution of the Civilserve GmbH and its trading partners (software developers and local specialized dealers) will be reduced and close customer-service relationships will be guaranteed.

It is planned that the specialized dealers will distribute the software licenses as OEM ware. That is, Civilserve will only sellthe rights of use of the software. The compilation of the installation media and the software documentation is left to the particular dealer.

The cooperation of asknet AG (Internet shop operator and developer) with WIBU-SYSTEMS AG enables the decentralized distribution orientation, as planned by Civilserve GmbH. A project study completed last summer showed that all business processes can be displayed one-to-one via the shop system. For example, the dealers can buy license rights and program and administer the WIBU-BOXes for the customer on-site via the shop. The resulting records can be automatically adjusted with the CRM system of the Civilserve GmbH via an interface.

The shop system will be used in order to support the distribution activities of the Civilserve GmbH. Civilserve is already a dis-tribution partner of the following software developers: GGU mbH, CSI GmbH, MWM GmbH, Barthauer Software GmbH, IngSoft GmbH, delta datenbanken, ribeka.com Int. Software GmbH, Golden Software Inc., Environumerix GbR and GEO-SLOPE Ltd.. The portion of internal activities shall be clearly extended so that the following services can be offered to software developers:

  • Implementing the WIBU-KEY software protection system into existing software products
  • Making of manuals and online help documentation
  • Making of installation routines
  • Creating and maintaining the Internet pages
  • Online software test via terminal server
  • Tradeshow Planning
  • Selling licenses via own shop system including WIBU-BOX programming
  • Electronic delivery of program licenses
  • Online helpdesk system

Next year we plan the introduction of the shop system after the license model for GGU software has been adapted using the WIBU-BOXes. Subsequently, also other software developers can take advantage of the extended services of Civilserve GmbH. Even after seven months we can give ashort, positive report of the first step – the WIBU-KEY implementation. Introducing the WIBU-BOXes has led to aclear increase in sales of new and additional licenses, and the customer acceptanceof the new software protection format was very high. The latter we ascribe to the good market position of the developer.