Name Change Will Be Last Stop for Hariston Corp. : Corporations: Firm that switched nations, CEOs and industries to escape past will soon be CD-Soft Corp.


Hariston Corp., a computer software company that is trying to shake a troubled past, said it will soon change its name to CD-Soft Corp., and plans to purchase a Solana Beach-based software publisher.

Hariston was previously based in Vancouver, Canada, and was essentially a holding company with oil and gas interests plus a controversial minerals extraction plant in Butte, Mont. The company has been plagued in recent years by accusations that its stock price was being manipulated by Irving Kott, a Canadian stock promoter previously convicted of fraud.

J.V. McGoodwin, an Orange County venture capitalist who says he was hired to clean house at Hariston last year, said the latest actions are part of an ongoing effort to distance the company from its shady history.

In the past year, Hariston has sold its oil and gas holdings, as well as its minerals extraction plant, and jumped into the multimedia industry by purchasing a software publisher in San Diego.

Hariston has moved its headquarters to Costa Mesa, and the company's board of directors recently voted to make the move official by applying for government permission to emigrate from Canada to the United States. The board also approved the name change to CD-Soft, the name of Hariston's software publishing subsidiary in the United States.

Both these changes still require regulatory and shareholder approval, steps that could be completed by the end of the first quarter, McGoodwin said.

Hariston said it has signed an agreement to acquire HighText Publications Inc., a publisher of educational software.

HighText produces multimedia programs that can be used to review college-level business, mathematics and science subjects. The company has three titles for sale, and plans to release an additional six titles early next year.

Terms of the acquisition, which is expected to be completed by the end of the month, were not disclosed.

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