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PC DOCS forms Internet software division

PC DOCS has formed a new division, whose mantra is to build and deliver software that extends the company's reach into the Internet. Its mission: create a new revenue and profitability stream that is a logical extension of PC DOCS' core document and knowledge management operations. The division will be headed by Craig Wallace, a former Microsoft sales and marketing executive and most recently the head honcho at iSTAR Internet, Canada's leading Internet solutions company.

The new division's objective is pure and simple, according to PC DOCS chairman and CEO Rubin Osten. "This company has been formed to accelerate our growth in the Internet software arena." For this new foray, PC DOCS plans to leverage its family of Internet products ­ CyberDOCS, DOCSFusion, and Fulcrum's Knowledge Network ­ and plans to "acquire technologies and talent from select third parties." Osten also mentioned that partnerships with independent software vendors may serve as potential areas of growth.

Osten knows that pursuing the Internet for profit will require a new way of doing business, but he believes that PC DOCS can remain true to its document and knowledge management roots. "We realize that doing business in an Internet-enabled, knowledge-based economy requires a different operating paradigm," he said. "This initiative gives us the framework to exploit the significant new revenue opportunities presented by the Internet, while still maintaining our focus on leadership within existing target markets."

With his new employer's experience and position in the document and knowledge management arenas, Wallace is optimistic about the division's future. "There is no doubt that we will have a significant advantage over other Internet start-ups," he said. "Having access to established products, as well as the resources, distribution channel and other benefits of a leading worldwide software organization will enable us to grow at a rapid pace."

According to the Delphi Group, the acquisition allows PC DOCS to increase investor value by tapping into the feverish energy surrounding the Internet and Internet start-ups. More importantly, the new group speeds the absorption of Fulcrum's product line with its existing business, a process that the industry has been watching with a keen eye. "We don't believe PC DOCS had much of an option but to do something more than what had been done thus far in positioning the two product sets," according to Delphi. "The positioning exercise is an important one, yet avoiding a sense that this is old wine in 'Net bottles will depend on how well PC DOCS repackages the products as well as the message." Delphi forsees "a short window of six to eight months" for this maneuver to be successful.

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