Oce By Noel Ward, Executive Editor September 2, 2003 -- Boeing’s current tagline of “Forever New Frontiers” can apply equally to the aerospace giant’s focus on its industry and to Océ’s new seven-year, multi-million dollar contract with the world’s leading aerospace company. The contract has drawn a lot of attention to Océ, which has been quietly establishing itself as a force to be reckoned with in every area of office, network and production printing. The Boeing contract would be a big win for any company, but is especially important for Océ and is proof that its evolving strategy to integrate the “office” and “production printing” sides of the company provides clear benefits to customers. More interesting, though, is the new frontier it indicates for Océ. In the past, facilities management (FM) contracts at Océ have been handled through its subsidiary Archer Management. The Boeing deal encompasses all parts of Océ, Archer, Wide Format Printing Systems and Océ Printing Systems. In addition, the contract goes beyond the scope of typical industry FM arrangements which normally just encompass print operations. Relying on Océ’s software and hardware, and that of key partners, the Boeing deal delves deeply into content and document management and end-to-end production support for a broad range of document types throughout Boeing. The real details are still under wraps, but ODJ caught up with a busy Océ spokesperson this week who provided input from several key executives: ODJ: Is this type of FM contract new for Océ or is it being done thru Archer Management? Océ: Because of the scope of Boeing's requirements this solution was developed centrally at Océ headquarters, drawing on the resources of all Océ companies including Archer, Océ Wide Format Printing Systems, and Océ Printing Systems. ODJ: How does the Boeing contract differ from other FM contracts at Océ or Archer? Size? Scope of operation? Range of applications? How else? Océ: This is a unique contract on many fronts. Size is just one. There is a very wide range of applications involved as well as the integration of a large number of fairly complicated data streams that need to be translated rationally and productively. There is also a substantial content management element that has drawn upon the talents and products in all corners of our company. Océ has made a considerable investment in being able to efficiently bring all the capabilities of our company to bear on customer needs through a single customer contact. That investment appears to be paying off. ODJ: About how large an equipment sale does this constitute? Océ: About 25% of the contract is for printers, service, supplies, and software. The rest is for management, operation and integration services. ODJ: What types of equipment are anticipated being installed? What about software? Océ: There is a very wide range of equipment including multi-function devices, monochrome and color wide-format printers, cut-sheet production printers, and roll-fed production printers. Software includes a number of Océ PRISMA modules, Océ Engineering Exec modules, and Océ Doc Works Exec. ODJ: What are some of the key applications that will be running? Océ: Key applications run the gamut from invoices and shipping documents to correspondence, flight and maintenance manuals for airlines , engineering documents and other technical documentation. ODJ: Do you have a sense of print volumes? Océ: Print volumes will run in the hundreds of millions of impressions annually. ODJ: Can you tell how much will be "office" and how much will be "production" print? Océ: This contract is for operation of central reproduction and printing facilities. It does not currently include photocopying. ODJ: Who were the competitors? Océ: All of the usual suspects. ODJ: What do you think made Océ the choice for Boeing? Océ: There were a number of factors. Boeing was looking for a strategic partner who would work with them to make their operation more efficient and help reduce costs. Océ brought some unique methods for solving the problems that made Boeing comfortable. For example, some of the proven, proprietary software we will be using at Boeing will deliver genuine cost savings and process improvements. Boeing also appreciated our openness about what we could and couldn’t do. I think our nimbleness, flexibility and aggressiveness for the business was also important. And of course there are sure to be some other intangible reasons which we learn over time.