How much of a stretch is it for Magic to make all these conversions to .net? I also heard they were looking into aquisitions. What companies would benefit this effort or would any aquisitions be unrelated revenue bumps from buying a company on the cheap?
That's a very interesting idea, making the Studio available\free, but a version that only creates a specialized runtime (i.e. cloud based). That would certainly get around:
1) How do you give away the studio to new customers when all existing customers have paid big bucks through the years?
2) All existing customers would still continue paying maintenance as long as they continued on older platforms.
Is this your speculation or is this something you heard being kicked around?
As for the hosting partner, not sure why this is a State Secret. It does, however, create a buzz and am amazed they've kept it a secret this long - have not seen anything at all with regard to who it might be.
I believe MSE is getting ready to unveil a revamped revenue model. They will release a "version" of UniPaaS which is fully functional but only provides a PaaS (platform as a service) runtime environment. It will be free or very inexpensive for developers to purchase(vs $6,000 now). This will parallel the start-up of their own cloud service which will be provided via a partner(supposedly a world class hosting company already selected(as stated at the WWUG conf in April but so far kept secret who it is). This will occur shortly after or along with the next incremental release of UniPaaS that switches from the proprietary Magic Studio(developers environment) to MS Studio! This is huge people! I believe they are readying Magic UniPaaS to run within the Microsoft Azure Cloud Service. This will happen 1st or 2nd Qtr of 12'. 2012 will be the "coming out party" for Magic.
Remember, these .Net conversions are within the Magic environment. Magic converted to the new version, uniPaaS 2.0, is 100% .Net, but users who upgrade stay within the Magic family and Magic will receive both a one-time upgrade licensing charge along with annual maintenance fees.
As far as I know, Magic is the only development environment where there is an upgrade path from systems created back in 1988 (DOS) all the way through uniPaaS 2.0. This is what Magic does to perfection, I have certainly experienced it, so there are no issues from a technical standpoint.
The bulk of the upgrades will happen over the next 18 months. This is why GB guided next years revenue to be in the plus 40% category. This number does not come out of thin air, Magic has a relatively, huge customer base and revenue from this new version is predictable. Magic also has an extremely loyal customer base. When customer's drop Magic it is rarely based on the product, mostly it's a political thing, and are sorry for the move after the fact.
You can also count on an acquisition, but it will be at a time and place of their choosing (this is Israel after all). They have been very patient and the moronic shorts who previously accused them of making acquisitions based on the stock price have been proven wrong once again (surprise, surprise). It will happen and will add both to their top and bottom line.