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Imaging on the bloc

Merger and acquisition activity in the image capture and forms processing market is evident from recent moves by Formware, Wheb Systems and Xionics.

Creating what will easily be the largest company in the forms processing business (projected $25 million in revenues, 125 employees), Formware (www.formwarecorp.com) and Wheb Systems (www.whebsys.com) have merged. At this writing, no decision has been made on the name under which the companies will operate. Formware President and CEO Reynolds Bish will act as CEO of the combined operations; Wheb Systems' CEO Randall Hawks will become chairman.

While the two companies provide similar application sets, they have very little overlap in their respective vertical markets. Formware has a large installed base in medical-claims processing and service bureaus; Wheb Systems provides credit card application processing solutions, order processing and state and local tax form solutions.

The two have also discrete sales channel relationships. Formware goes to market through AMS, Banctec, DST, Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, FileNet and Input Software, while Wheb Systems has relationships with EDS, Unisys, HNC and Wausau Financial.

Nearly one year after purchasing Seaport Imaging, Xionics (www.xionics.com) is selling its entire imaging division called the Digital Documents Product Division. The company stresses that it continues to win new contracts and promote its products and that the divestiture of the imaging business is simply a financial move to return to core competencies.

Citing the growing difference between Xionics' core OEM business and the imaging business, Gary Ambrosino, VP and general manager of Xionics' Digital Document Products Division, said, "The markets have become so different. The sales channels are completely different."

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