Lexmark in Sales Chats for its Software & Hardware Units
Lexmark International, a global technology leader, has announced the release of Kofax TotalAgility 7.3, the first unified platform delivering omni-channel customer engagement and rapid digital transformation across multiple use cases. The announcement was made to more than 1,300 attendees at Inspire, the Lexmark Enterprise Software annual conference, in Orlando, Fla.
"Lexmark Enterprise Software has been enabling digital transformation long before the term was coined and it became a strategic imperative,” said Reynolds C. Bish, Vice President of Lexmark and President of Lexmark Enterprise Software. “TotalAgility offers an unparalleled depth and breadth of capabilities, and delivers a seamless experience to organizations and their customers, advancing digital transformation in the enterprise.”
The Kofax platform offers integrated capabilities, including mobile, omni-channel capture, process automation, dynamic case management, information integration, customer communications management, electronic signatures, content management, and analytics.
If the customer conversation begins on the desktop or in the branch, the platform enables the client to effortlessly shift across channels: searching for information on their phone, reviewing the quote on their desktop at work and signing the contract via their tablet regardless of their location.
The TotalAgility software seamlessly conducts multiple interactions from inbound information capture through outbound customer communications to success in the First Mile™ of customer engagement.
Is Lexmark Getting Ready for a Sale?
Rumors have been floating around that Lenovo is in discussions with the US based printer manufacturer Lexmark to acquire the company who announced in July that it would cut more than 1000 employee worldwide, despite its recent purchase of software provider Kofax.
Last October, Wall Street Journal reported that Lexmark, which has a $2 billion market capitalization, started to work with investment bank Goldman Sachs to “explore strategic alternatives.” In the company’s earnings call for the third quarter of 2015, Lexmark officials said those alternatives could include a sale of the entire company or the spinoff of part of the company to either strategic or financial buyers. Jean-Paul Montupet, lead director of Lexmark’s board, stated:
“The board does not believe Lexmark’s current share price fully reflects the intrinsic value created by the company, and the board has concluded it is appropriate to explore strategic alternatives as the next step to unlock this value.”
Lenovo has been acquiring businesses which are in an unfavorable situation such as the acquisition of the IBM Think Pad, the IBM server, and Motorola. The deal with Lexmark would be a “logical fit” for Lenovo, which has seen a significant grow in both PC and server markets over the course of the past six months. They also have good relationships with the distribution channels and a host of compatible products.
On the other hand, it has been said that Lexmark’s management rescinded the deal, claiming that Lexmark was in discussions with Lenovo and that the deal could not materialize.
Moreover, Reuters has recently reported that The Guangdong, China-based firm, Apex Technology is eyeing a potential acquisition of Lexmark International. Although the talks are "promising", there is no certainty that a deal with Lexmark would go ahead, according to the sources who asked not to be identified as the negotiations are confidential. Executives from Apex are visiting representatives of Lexmark in the United States this month to negotiate on terms. The acquisition would be a “natural fit”, as Apex Technology is a manufacturer of ink cartridge chips.
Throughout the past few years, Kentucky-based Lexmark has bought software assets to expand its business services. Last year it bought Kofax Ltd for about $1 billion, in hopes of doubling the size of its enterprise software unit to a $700 million, as Kofax provides data services to financial, insurance and healthcare companies. As a result, Lexmark's software is now able to scan everything from spreadsheets to medical images and provides services to banking, healthcare, insurance, and retail companies. At the end of the day, the software business has a small portion of revenue compared the hardware business, although its growth rate is in rise.
Dave Caldeira, Senior Vice President of Product and Solution Marketing at Lexmark Enterprise Software, explained the company’s position:
"Lexmark is well positioned to enable incremental digital transformation with individual product deployments that may lead to more substantial engagements that can ultimately include the entire portfolio," Caldeira said. "We can help organizations tackle their digital transformation initiatives and strategy at a comfortable pace."
According to Caldeira, there are three common pain points for companies in their digital transformation strategy:
Eliminating analog processes and the dependency on paper and manual labor.
Accomplishing an accurate and responsive process optimization.
Overcoming organizational resistance as the digital transformation initiative should be driven to all end-to-end processes.
Lexmark has also released several mobile solutions that streamline business processes and improve the customer experience:
Kofax Mobile SDK, provides real time data extraction and speeds customer interactions including new account onboarding.
Kofax Analytics for Mobile, with pre-built analytics dashboards that work “out of the box” to track application performance, provide actionable insight into the array of Kofax mobile frameworks.
It seems like earlier negotiations did not produce satisfactory offers, but Lexmark, formerly owned by IBM, will continue to explore strategic alternatives, including a possible sale. At the same time, the company will keep enhancing its solutions to speed digital transformation throughout enterprises.