Daily Trust (Abuja)

21 May 2012

Nigeria: Country Loses U.S.$513 Million to Software Piracy Annually

Lagos — Business Software Alliance (BSA) has said that Nigerian economy loses an estimated $513 million to software piracy every year just as Autodesk launched an amnesty period for users of pirated software to move over to legal versions of AutoCAD and related software products.

According to the Sales Director of Autodesk Africa's distribution partner, WorldsView Technologies, Richard Smedley-Williams, the growing phenomenon of counterfeit software shatters the market of legitimate service providers, inflicts damage and creates dangers for customers.

He described the trend as an economic loss that becomes exponential once imitation hardware and illegal imports are taken into account.

This situation, he said, informed Autodesk Africa plans to pro-actively curb software piracy in Nigeria.

Smedley-Williams noted that the amnesty offering gives people the opportunity to approach local Autodesk channel partners to purchase legal copies without fear of legal action.

He said in addition, Autodesk is making legal AutoCAD-family software available from as little as $199 until July 15, 2012, a massive 89% discount when compared to pricing in the USA.

Smedley-Williams stated that, "in a recent research conducted by the Business Software Alliance (BSA), most Autodesk customers in Africa would prefer to buy licensed software, but often don't know where to find it.

As a result, they resort to pirated copies which don't carry any of the benefits associated with buying valid licensed software, including after sales support and regular upgrades.

The key to changing a region's mindset about software piracy is to make the legitimate product more accessible and affordable to local customers."

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