Is it the end of ICL as we know it? This may seem a daft question, given it has confirmed it is to float on the London Stock Exchange, paving the way for inward investment and signalling expansion.
In the coming months, you can expect to hear about ICL's glorious record as a global systems and services player, running more than three million PCs and 8,000 servers on behalf of client firms in 70 countries.
Other testimonials proffered by the company will doubtless include its profit of £60m last year made on sales of £2.7bn, and that in the past 12 months orders have risen 24 per cent.
Moreover, it can be expected for ICL's parent Fujitsu to point out that it is only relinquishing a quarter of its shares, so underlining its ongoing commitment.
But before we go all dewy-eyed with patriotism at the rebirth of Britain's one-time computer giant, and before ICL's business partners hoist the Union Jack, it might be worth re-examining Fujitsu's earlier reassurances.
When Fujitsu bought an 80 per cent stake of ICL, it similarly stressed its support for the company, not just as a corporate identity but as a technological innovator. The Japanese promised ICL's branding would be preserved, as would its manufacturing operations and proprietary systems.
They were promises made with good reason - millions of pounds worth of taxpayers' money had been lavished on propping up ICL, and politicians were not alone in demanding it shouldn't be stripped of its assets and subsumed into the Fujitsu identity.
To emphasise its sincerity, Fujitsu promised it would re-float its acquisition in five years at most, putting the bulk of ICL's stock back in UK control.
But what has happened? For starters, it has taken twice as long for ICL to be returned to the stock market, while in the intervening years, virtually all of its indigenous manufacturing plants have been closed down with thousands of British job losses.
Elsewhere, units have been carved up, sold off and divested of core technology.
ICL's flagship mainframe OS, VME, is no longer supported - despite Japanese assurances to the contrary - while its PCs and servers are similarly defunct, replaced by Fujitsu models.
Of course, it might be argued that it is to be expected of any company making the transition from computer manufacturer to services outlet, although the repositioning only came after Fujitsu's takeover.
Indeed, in 1990, just after Fujitsu's purchase, ICL was still pitching to be the number three British PC manufacturer, its boxes shifted largely though a network of resellers. In other words, computers made here and sold to British firms by British dealers.
Where is ICL now? God only knows - and ditto for its survival in the next decade, stock market flotation and Japanese assurances notwithstanding.
If you suspect Fujitsu - having devoured ICL's customer fabric - is now just spitting out the pips, you could be forgiven.
So I pose the question - will ICL survive as a UK entity in the next millennium, or will it fall victim to a thousand cuts, delivered with Samurai sword-like deftness?
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