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Agfa Hosts Third Annual Apogee User Conference, Focuses On Automation

Press release from the issuing company

Focuses On Automation From Request For Estimate To Delivered Job Ridgefield Park, NJ – September 20, 2002 – Agfa concluded a three-day Apogee user conference on September 18th in Ghent, Belgium. This was the third time Apogee users gathered to discuss workflow issues and solutions. The event attracted 185 Agfa customers from 21 countries. Technology partners Adobe Systems, Enfocus, HP and ScenicSoft joined Agfa to provide their insights into the next generation of workflow automation. With "Focus on Automation" as the conference theme, Agfa demonstrated how an automated workflow in which every task was harmoniously integrated was essential to business growth and was the inevitable outcome of current market conditions. Customers supported Agfa’s position with their experiences in moving toward fully automated workflows. David Brown of E.T. Heron (Wyndeham Group, U.K.) produces over 350 magazines per month. Using Apogee Series 3, computer-to-plate with automated plate loading and online processing, said Brown, "We are able to get a 32-page section to press in one hour; 35 minutes if we are in a hurry." Jean-François Cuillerier of Quebecor World, a co-developer of Agfa Delano, emphasised the positive results of automation on his staff. "We are in control. There is less stress in the plant and less confusion. This improves the result; we have more predictability, and our customers have more confidence in us," he said. Andre Van Elderen of Eindhoven Packaging in the Netherlands, which produces roughly 500 plates per day, reported a shorter turnaround and greater flexibility, giving him the ability to respond to the increasing demands of his customers. Agfa positioned ApogeeX and Agfa Delano as the company’s solution to a new workflow paradigm that begins and ends with the print buyer. Agfa demonstrated that equally essential to the new model are automated hardware systems that integrate seamlessly to provide an uninterrupted production stream. Customers had the opportunity to experience the new workflow technology at the "Automation Square" exhibition and in hands-on classrooms in Ghent’s ICC (International Congress Centre) where the event was held. Participants particularly enjoyed the opportunity to network with other users and Agfa experts to seek solutions to problems at the technology labs. Said Peter Mills, director of First In Print, which is based in Albany, Auckland, New Zealand. "The presentations helped me revisit how I work… I ask myself how this [event] could help me make more money or save work. For my purposes, this was just what I needed." Mills was given special recognition for being the attendee to have travelled the most miles to attend the user conference. In a keynote address, Agfa’s CEO, Ludo Verhoeven positioned the company as forward-looking agile company focused on digital solutions. Many customers offered Agfa opinions and ideas about how future events could help them maximise their experiences. Most praised the Agfa team for its commitment to the customer as well as the technology. About Agfa The Agfa-Gevaert Group is one of the world’s leading imaging companies. Agfa develops, manufactures and markets analog and digital systems, intended mainly for the graphics industry, healthcare, non-destructive testing, micrographics, motion picture and photography markets. Agfa’s headquarters are in Mortsel, Belgium. The company is active in 40 countries and has 120 agents throughout the world. Together they achieved a turnover of 4,911 million Euros in 2001. Product and company information can be found on Agfa’s home page on the World Wide Web at: www.agfa.com.