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19.12.2008

PROMT End of Year Newsletter

Dear Customers and Business Partners,

Before everyone leaves for the Holidays, we would like to take this opportunity to thank you for your business throughout the year. You have made 2008 a great year for us, and despite the current global financial situation, we hope that next year will also be a successful one. We wish you all a happy Holiday Season and a great New Year’s celebration. In our end-of-year newsletter, we would like to update you on our activities, events and product developments. We are grateful for your comments, support and suggestions for improvement.

Strategic Partnership and Funding

One of the most significant events of the year for PROMT was the acquisition of controlling interest in PROMT by ESAF (Earlier Stage Alternative Fund), a private equity fund managed by Renova Capital, a European private equity house. Since July, PROMT has successfully implemented some important organizational and infrastructure changes. We are currently working on new initiatives capitalizing on our years of linguistic expertise together with Renova Capital’s financial strength and business experience. Both PROMT and Renova Capital are very optimistic about all the opportunities that the partnership brings to both companies.

New office in the US

In September of this year, PROMT established its San Francisco-based US office – PROMT Americas.

PROMT Americas’ main roles are:

  • to promote PROMT’s award-winning line of products, services and larger scale enterprise solutions in the US, Canada and Latin America markets.
  • to contribute their professional knowledge and expertise for further enhancement of PROMT products, solutions and services.

We at PROMT are confident that the strategic US location in the hub of the world’s high-tech industry, along with the company’s unique and constantly evolving technology, will allow PROMT to rapidly increase its market share in the Americas and strengthen its position as one of the most influential players in the language technology field.

Awards and Accomplishments in Europe

In Europe, PROMT has also focused on strengthening its position in the French, Spanish and German markets. In May 2008, PROMT carried out two road shows (Paris, France and Madrid, Spain) that resulted in a series of meaningful publications in popular Spanish and French computer newspapers and magazines. In 2008, PROMT technology received high marks in numerous translation software comparative tests carried out by prestigious computer magazines such as PC&I, PC Today, and PC Expert and received 5 awards in France and Spain.

More than 50 publications in the Spanish and French media announced the appearance of a new and powerful player in the MT market. In fact, more than 25 product reviews in the French and Spanish press highlighted the competitive advantages of PROMT technology, such as translation quality, engine intuitiveness, and extensive functionality. PROMT’s product line garnered similar accolades in Germany. PROMT received the highest marks from c’t in a review of MT technology in March 2008. In addition, @promt 8.3 for Mac received an award in December 2008 from Maclife. Lastly, more than 15 articles in the German media were focused on PROMT’s products and achievement in 2008.

Technology Achievements

In 2008, the highly anticipated International release of version 8.0 of @promt line of desktop and server-based products took place. Our @promt 8.0 product line offers improved translation quality, greater usability, integration with an expanded range of third party products, including Microsoft Office 2007 applications and OpenOffice, as well as compatibility with Windows Vista. Furthermore, our products are designed to make international communication, research, foreign website browsing, and document translation easier for everyone from home users to large enterprises alike.

PROMT strengthened its presence in the Internet this year, as well:

- We launched our new corporate website www.promt.com, which provides an enhanced user experience and features a new corporate design. Those of you visiting our online store may also notice the new Digital River platform that powers our e-store with a strong e-commerce engine and the increased security of electronic order fulfillment.
- PROMT’s popular free online-translation portals, www.online-translator.com and www.translate.ru, have undergone major changes in design and show significant functionality enhancements. Users can translate individual blocks of text or whole websites, using specialized lexicons in a variety of popular domains, and also have access to a set of additional features in advanced mode.
- PROMT engines worldwide, whether through our direct service or through ASP channels and partners, such as, abacho.de and mail.ru, and Beeline, have powered about 700 million translation requests in 2008.

We also had great news for mobile device users this year. In November 2008, a new version of a mobile translation portal was launched in Russia, m.translate.ru. This site can be accessed by all popular cell phone brands, smartphones, and even the iPhone. Now mobile users can access electronic dictionaries, use hotkeys, and switch between translation directions.

Events and Participation

Throughout 2008, PROMT has been a very active member of the language technology and global content management professional community. PROMT has presented its solutions and shared its vision and strategy at many leading industry events like the TAUS Roundtable in San Jose, Localization World in Madison, Wisconsin, the American Machine Translation Association conference in Hawaii, the Gilbane Group conference in Boston, the KITES conference in Helsinki, the Localization Latin America conference in Buenos Aires, and more. We are currently working on an article about post-editing machine translation output, which will be published in Multilingual Computing.

One of our major decisions as an active community member and as a language technology industry leader was to join the Translation Automation User Society (TAUS) Data Association as a Gold Founding Member. PROMT also joined the Globalization and Localization Association (GALA) and engaged Common Sense Advisory, a leading consulting firm specializing in language technology, as our technology and consulting partners. We are looking forward to these new cooperation opportunities and strongly believe that we will not only benefit from being a part of these reputable industry associations, but will also be able to contribute our knowledge and years of technical expertise to a community of language technology professionals and users that is growing worldwide.

In Russia, PROMT is also an active participant in Government IT initiatives. Since September 2008, PROMT Russia is a member of the Steering Committee sponsored by the Russian Government. The main objective of the Steering Committee is to guide and stimulate the growth of the IT sector in Russian economics.

What’s Next

We’d also like to give you a “sneak preview” of PROMT’s Linguistic and Technology Lab plans. As a part of PROMT’s overall technology strategy, we are focusing on two crucial breakthroughs:

  • Adherence to standards. PROMT is a strong proponent of transparency. We believe that implementation of standards is important for clients and vendors for smooth file exchange (portability and freedom). Portability and freedom is a win-win for everyone. For clients, portability results in better ROI: faster time to market, more seamless data migration and future proofing of their investment. For vendors, portability allows data import with fewer impediments, better honing of linguistic rules, and improvements to the engine altogether.

  • Hybridization of the engine. Numerous industry analysts have suggested that the most successful machine translation engines will incorporate the best of both worlds: rules based machine translation (RBMT) and statistics based machine translation (SMT). PROMT is actively working on this convergence. A prototype hybrid engine currently being developed by PROMT is based on its rules-based foundation for processing translation and is augmented by a robust statistical environment to help with disambiguation and to provide linguistic smoothing.

And last but not least – our annual Holiday Sale! We would like to thank our customers with an exclusive Holiday offer on @promt Expert 8.0. Please enter the promotion code “Holidays” and receive 40% off your purchase of our most advanced @promt translator,@promt Expert 8.0 Multilingual! This special offer is valid until Jan. 18th

Thank you again for making PROMT a success and Happy Holidays to everyone!

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