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Taking Partners At Warp Speed


Inside Wall Street

TAKING PARTNERS AT WARP SPEED

If you haven't heard of WARP 10 Technologies (WARPF), don't be crushed. Few have. On Mar. 8, its shares began trading on the NASDAQ at 11 3/4--and quickly fell to 9 1/2. No matter. WARP 10, which develops and makes ultrahigh-speed communication and networking products, is set to grab attention.

Why? It has signed an agreement, to be announced shortly, with a Big Board-listed global maker of comprehensive networking systems.

This pact, says investment adviser Richard Geist, should boost WARP 10's earnings to 30 cents a share in the year ending Jan. 31, 1997, up from an estimated 1 cents in fiscal 1996. Earnings will leap to $1 in 1998. These figures are based on a projected sales zoom to $30 million in 1997 and $100 million in 1998, vs. $3 million in 1996, figures Geist, editor of Geist Strategic Investing. Are these projections too rosy? Geist says they may even be modest.

WARP 10 is teaming up with a company dominant in the U.S. networking-products business, with 1995 revenues of $800 million. It's rumored WARP 10 and its new partner will jointly develop products offering asynchronous transfer mode (ATM) solutions for companies that need wider bandwidth to send multimedia information. ATM is a standard for the cell-based transmission of voice, data, and video information.

One of WARP 10's products is a package combining file server, print spooler, and image server--which reduces image-file size by up to 90% and speeds data movement over any network. WARP 10 supplies them to the entertainment and graphic-arts markets.

In three months, WARP 10 may sign anadditional pact with a telecommunications giant, says one pro. The stock, which edged up to 10 1/2 on Mar. 13, should hit 18 in a year, says Geist.BY GENE G. MARCIAL


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