Citrix Gets Into Education/Training, Announces Strong 4th Quarter


The beginning of 2010 has been eventful—or at the very least, promising—for Citrix Systems. At the end of January, their Q4 earnings report showed profit was up, and this week, their Citrix Online division announced the release of an online training solution called GoToTraining.

First, the money news. Citrix’s fourth quarter profits rose 47%, and they posted higher revenue both globally and across all its businesses. But, as has been a trend with many tech companies lately, even though Citrix exceeded expectations, shares were down 4.2% to $40.20. Things are still on the up and up, however, and the release of GoToTraining is undoubtedly only the beginning of Citrix’s accomplishments for 2010.

Online training has long been one of web conferencing’s biggest boons, so it’s a smart move on Citrix’s part to extend their popular GoToMeeting platform to include teaching functionalities. In the press release announcing the new product, Citrix Online’s general manager, Brett Caine, noted they’re hoping to draw some of the companies that will be increasing their investments as the economy recovers, saying that as businesses begin hiring and training more, “whether for product education, compliance, internal policies or customer-facing expertise, every business will be seeking ways to train their work force to improve productivity and enhance their value proposition.”

GoToTraining will offer users—among other things—full-service registration, and a content library and material distribution function for trainers (allowing them to easily adjust their curricula). The platform will also offer modern web conferencing staples like polls and tests, and the testing options offered will let trainers asses the attendees’ knowledge prior to sessions, as well as gauge retention of course material during and after sessions.

Some research given in the press release indicates that the web conferencing market for educational and corporate training will grow to $1.6 billion by 2014—an 11.5% compound annual rate from $678.1 million in 2009. The recession had terrible effects on many industries to be sure, but in a lot of ways it gave the video conferencing market a boost, businesses that cut travel and training costs with using online conferencing products will continue to rely on those goods after downturn. The education/training market will likely be big for web conferencing in the next couple years or so, and Citrix will certainly not be the only one to target it aggressively. We look forward to seeing what Citrix’s competitor—well-known and lesser-known—release.

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