Tucked away in a maze of stores selling low-end chop-shop PCs and pirated CD-Roms is Sun Microsystems' first entry into the local retail market. The Sun Ultra Shop is a dedicated section of the Centralfield Shop in the infamous Golden Computer Centre in Shamshuipo. The shop sells Sun's entry-level Ultra 5 and Ultra 10 workstations and the Ultra Enterprise 250 server. It also offers a version of the Sun Solaris operating system that runs on low-end Intel-based workstations and servers for $200. The Ultra 5 is one of the industry's cheapest workstations, with a starting price of US$2,745. But it is priced above the offerings of other stores in the mall, which will custom assemble a PC with a 300 MHz processor for as little as HK$4,000. Danny Tam, general manager Sun Hong Kong, said small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) were one of the targets Sun hoped to reach through the store. Centralfield had a well-established direct-sales team with contacts in the SME market, he said. Sun estimated there were about 60,000 SMEs in Hong Kong, but only 40 per cent of them were computerised. The potential market was very big, and Sun hoped the shop would allow it to approach the market from a different angle, Mr Tam said. Several local shopkeepers said they were surprised at Sun's decision to set up shop in the arcade, which is notorious for selling pirated software. One shopkeeper believed Sun chose the location because there were no other stores offering the Unix products. Another merchant voiced hopes that the Sun store would attract more business users to the centre. Sun believed its low prices on the Ultra line would attract home users and students, Mr Tam said. 'We feel, with the strong growth in Internet use in Hong Kong, this is the right time to promote alternative operating systems like Solaris,' he said. He said Sun was interested in forming partnership deals for retailing as it did not plan to open its own stores, but it would wait to see the results from its Centralfield venture before recruiting new partners.