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EFI Closes Printcafe Acquisition with a Majority Shareholder Approval, Creo Abstains

Wednesday, October 22, 2003

Press release from the issuing company

Oct. 22, 2003 -- (WhatTheyThink.com - Analysis by Gail Nickel-Kailing) -- Guy Gecht, CEO of EFI, sounded like a proud new papa as he commented on EFI’s announcement of the closing of the Printcafe acquisition. And well he should! It took almost nine months to the day from the January 23 announcement that EFI had made an unsolicited offer to acquire all of PCAF’s outstanding shares for $2.60 per share. EFI’s offer followed immediately on the heels of Creo’s offer of $1.30 per share. In February, the acquisition process took the tone of a soap opera with lawsuits, poison pills, and hints at conflict of interest tossed back and forth. By the end of March, the flurry had calmed and EFI entered the SEC no-man’s land of endless filing reviews. Summer with no resolution dragged on. In their quarterly earnings report, Printcafe attributed the Q2 decrease in license and subscription revenue “to uncertainty surrounding the pending acquisition that was announced early in the first quarter as well as overall economic conditions.” And yesterday, with a short and to-the-point press release, EFI brought a close to all doubt. EFI needed a shareholder majority over 50% to close on the sale, and achieved that with a nice margin, according to Gecht. Creo avoided casting their vote for or against by abstaining. (Creo's lawsuit alleging improper tactics during negotiations is pending against Printcafe and EFI .) WhatTheyThink.com’s Gail Nickel-Kailing worked most of yesterday to gain insight from the interested parties. Gail was able to speak with Guy Gecht, Marc Olin of Printcafe and Rochelle van Halm, Media Relations Manager at Creo. -- Rochelle van Halm, Media Relations Manager, Creo: “This result is what we have anticipated for some time. Creo expects to receive payment for our outstanding loan to Printcafe and to sell our remaining equity stake in Printcafe. The net proceeds to Creo will be in excess of $21 million.” -- Marc Olin, former President/CEO, Printcafe: “We’re really excited and look forward to a bright future as part of a great new company!” -- Guy Gecht, EFI’s CEO: “We had a majority for the merger and we feel good about that. It was a difficult vote to speculate – but we were confident that we would win. “Now we’re facing the challenge to put it all together. Considering how fast things were unfolding in the beginning, we are thankful to have had the time to put it all together. We’ve had seven months to prepare, to plan, and to decide. Now we are starting to execute. We believe we have everything we need for success –the people, the customers, the resources, and the plans. “It’s a great opportunity for our customers. Now they can plan for the future. It’s also wonderful for our employees because the uncertainty is gone. We expect a smooth transition. Printcafe and its people will be part of EFI, although some responsibilities will change. For example, Marc Olin will be EFI’s new VP/General Manager of Commercial Print Systems. “We expect a smooth transition. We’re excited – though it will be a lot of work. We’re confident that a year from now people will say it was a very good idea!” ==== Reach Gail at Gail@Business-Strategies-Etc.com




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