I have been approached this year (2023) for coming back with quotes for our products to them.
Softline is accordingly to registration, a Cypress registered company founded in Russia in 1993, with current headquarters in London. They are officially stating they are reselling/distributing “scientific software”.
That software includes just about any software from any software vendor as far as I can see. It is ranging from Microsoft products, Adobe products, over Embarcadero products to even my little business it seems.
Operating in Russia, Eastern Europe, Central Asia, Americas, India and Southeast Asia covering 95 cities in more than 50 countries. Softline offers private and public cloud, integrated technology, cybersecurity, software licensing, provisioning of hardware, and many other IT related services.
Softline has partnerships with more than 6,000 software and hardware vendors including Microsoft, Oracle, VMware, Adobe, HPE, IBM, EMC, Symantec, Dell, Citrix, Autodesk, Cisco Systems, Salesforce.com, Kaspersky Lab, Huawei, Alloy Software amongst others.https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Softline_International
So it is not a small company.
They have in October 2022 split out Softline Russia to a company of its own, and let the remaining part continue under the name Noventiq Group which is owned by Noventiq Holdings Plc.
Its founder and current owner Igor Borovikov is still registered with address in Russia.
If one is visiting Softlines original web site: https://softline.com/
then one is greeted with the fact that it has been split out, etc. and a link to the “new” (original name actually) Noventiq site.
But if visiting the partner site, listed on Embarcaderos website:
and clicking on the link, one is taken to Softline Armenia (https://softlinearmenia.am/)
That is all fine… Armenia is not on the restriction list, but when locating the Armenian flag on that site and clicking on it:
Will being us to this page:
Which lists Russia as a source of software purchases.
So, curious me enters the Russian variant of the site, and enters its online store.
First I look for if it is possible to purchase a Windows 11 license in their store.
That is not a problem… even states “Different licenses available”.
That is despite Microsoft loudly expressed that they withdrew from Russia, and no longer provided access for Windows 11 to Russian installations!
However in Jan 2023, they have very quietly opened up again. Hmmm… are we supposed to continue to think that MS (and Intel) are blocking Russian access, since there have not been much noise made about the reopening of it?
Ok… then lets look at another company, supposedly withdrawing from Russia, Autodesk who provides several cool products, like AutoCAD and Fusion360 which are used for machinery design and manufacturing.
But on Softline’s Russian variant, you will find plenty of Autodesk products (now Google translated to english for ease of reading).
Curiously I then searched for Embarcadero:
And to my surprise loads of software, including Delphi 11 is readily available for purchase.
So the question must be…. are there sanctions on software and IT technology which are being breached, or are the sanctions only in words?
In fact searching for Intel reveals that higher than allowed by sanctions processors are sold, access to all Intels development tools are sold, including Intels performance math library and VTune which I am pretty sure are essential parts in at least parts of the weapons industry.
It is even possible to purchase an NVidia 4090 graphics card, which is the top of the line graphics and AI accelerator card today, of obvious reasons very attractive for weapons industry to develop/improve AI enhanced targeting systems and more.
Are all these items parallel imports or are they sold by western countries knowingly to Russia, despite sanctions?
I will NOT sell my stuff to Russia, not because I dislike Russians, but I dislike the casualties of life, property and sovereignty in Ukraine due to the Russian actions! But others seems to put bottom line value higher than value of humans.
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