Lernout & Hauspie Speech Products NV, Ypres, Belgium is planning to launch an automatic multiple translation service for the Internet by the end of the year, after winning a $35m contract from the private Brussels Translation Consortium fund, to develop such a service. The company says it has developed, acquired and licensed technologies essential to the multi-lingual search and machine translation in multiple languages. The company claims the capability, when combined with an Internet search engine, will, for example, translate a German-language search request into English, and then translate the result back into German. We are particularly excited about this opportunity, as it will employ both our speech technologies and our translation capabilities to make the Internet available to thousands of non-English speaking users and provide Internet access to non-English users in other languages, declares Lernout & Hauspie president Gaston Bastiaens. The $35m funding is for two years, and the company plans start a new translation group of over 100 linguists and engineers to begin development in Brussels, headquarters of the Mendez Language & Services division of Lernout & Hauspie. Gesellschaft fur Multilinguale System GmbH will provide various language pairs to support the effort. The company plans to launch a pilot service by the end of 1997, and full service in the beginning of 1998. In the initial phase it will support English- German and English-Spanish translation, and additional language pairs are to be developed in the coming year. The Belgian company also plans to offer several levels of services: basic machine translation for a flat monthly fee, unlimited specific vertical market machine translation for a higher fee, and combined machine and human translation on a fee-per-page basis.