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Atempo Asks America to Say Oui

Will U.S. businesses trust a French company for data security?

Atempo Inc. is about to find out. Later this month, the Paris-based backup software vendor will establish full-scale operations in Palo Alto, Calif., as part of its plan to beef up North American sales. That effort actually began last October when a team of U.S. executives joined the company to hire staff and form a sales strategy. Now the 20-person American team is poised to find out if a French import can sell as a backup and restore solution.

Referring to a putative backlash against the F country, Atempo CEO Thierry Flajoliet insists, We’ve not seen any of that. What we’ve seen is people asking us, ‘How do you solve our problem?’ Besides, we’re an American company now.”

VP of North American sales Marianne Nole says she remembers seeing “French Toast” crossed out on a menu and replaced with “American Toast” before joining Atempo. And we all remember Freedom Fries. Still, Nole says she has received no negative reaction during her five months with Atempo.

“Nothing’s going to be easy,” Nole says of competing with the likes of Veritas Software Corp. (Nasdaq: VRTS) and Legato Software. “We’re just getting our legs now. But I see the pain points out there in companies’ networks. It’s a case of getting customers to talk about the pain

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