Agfa takes over Esko-Graphics newspaper activities

Press release from the issuing company

Leipzig, Germany – October 13, 2003 – At the opening of IfraExpo 2003, Esko-Graphics and Agfa-Gevaert today announce they have signed an agreement whereby Agfa will take over all service and support obligations towards Esko-Graphics’ DMX platesetter and EskoNet newspaper workflow software customers and distribution partners. Esko-Graphics earlier this year announced its strategic intention to focus on core business areas in the commercial printing and packaging markets, and to divest a number of other activities including those targeting the newspaper industry. Under the agreement, Esko-Graphics’ technical support staff for DMX platesetters, both in the central competence center and worldwide in the field, will transfer to Agfa. The EskoNet software development and support teams will also transfer. In total about 20 staff will transition. Support for Elaplan newspaper workflow customers will remain with Esko-Graphics. ”Agfa welcomes Esko-Graphics’ reputable DMX and EskoNet customers”, says Etienne Van Damme, Agfa’s Senior Vice-President of Business Development. “We are committed to the newspaper industry, and look forward to grow the relationship for mutual business success.” Existing DMX customers will have the opportunity to order additional DMX units through Agfa for a limited period. Agfa will provide support, service and spare parts to all customers through its worldwide customer service and support organization. The next version of the EskoNet software (version 2.1) will be completed under Agfa’s direction and will be made available to the installed base. Going forward, EskoNet customers can expect a full migration path into both current and future workflow systems. “There is no doubt that we have reached an agreement with a key player in the newspaper market”, says Kim Graven-Nielsen, President and CEO of Esko-Graphics. “We are convinced we have found in Agfa a strongly committed partner that brings our newspaper customers a solid platform for continued support, ensures protection of their investments, and offers them a viable growth path into the future.” Esko-Graphics will continue to provide full service and support to its customers during a brief transition period.