Adobe Makes Enterprise Move

Debuts document integration solutions for the extended enterprise; allies with IBM, Agile, Documentum, PTC

San Jose, CA — April 7, 2003 — Software company Adobe Systems, known for its publishing applications, today launched a new initiative to deliver document integration solutions for the extended enterprise, rolling out several new products and forging alliances with a host of other solution providers.

Adobe says its solutions for integrating data and documents into enterprise workflows address key problem areas facing enterprises today: automating forms, eliminating paper and keeping compliant with government initiatives. The company says that its new Acrobat 6.0 family of products and its XML architecture, along with Adobe's suite of servers and other solutions, extend the usability of existing processes and infrastructure and help ensure better communication and interaction across a company's value chain.

The company also announced alliances with software vendors such as IBM, Intel, Agile, Documentum, PTC and others to deliver end-to-end document processes for applications such as content management, digital signatures and product lifecycle management. Adobe says it is also working closely with top systems integrators, such as Accenture, to implement its solutions at enterprises.

Acrobat Upgrade

The new Acrobat 6.0 family enables users, workgroups and business professionals across the extended enterprise to create, share, review and archive files in the Adobe Portable Document Format (PDF), the software company said.

The new family — with Professional, Standard and "Elements" versions — offers different levels of functionality to address specific customer needs, according to Adobe. Professional targets business and creative and engineering professionals that work with complex, graphically rich layouts, with tools to improve the process of document exchange, review and archive. Standard offers tools that let workgroups simplify document reviews using new, task-based interface. Elements is a volume-license-only product that allows enterprises to place PDF-creation capability on their users' desktops.

XML Architecture

Adobe also debuted its XML architecture for document creation, collaboration and process management across the enterprise. "The new XML architecture provides an open framework for extending the value of business processes inside and outside the firewall," the company said in a statement. "Now businesses can bring people and processes together via XML, while retaining the inherent presentation, security and interactivity of documents in the Portable Document Format (PDF)."

Key components of Adobe's XML architecture include intelligent forms, process automation, data integration, security and publishing for archiving and printing. The architecture will be supported across Adobe's client and server solutions and will integrate Adobe PDF. The software company said that the architecture will take full advantage of XML for integration and bring continuity to business processes by presenting XML data in PDF for reliably sharing, viewing and interacting through Acrobat 6.0 software or Adobe Reader.

Alliance with IBM

Adobe said it is working with IBM, Documentum and Open Text, as well as using its established relationship with SAP, to bridge the gap between structured and unstructured data, helping businesses automate paper-based workflows. In the manufacturing segment, software from PTC and Agile will link with Adobe Acrobat desktop software to help companies better manage the product lifecycle process with improved review and mark-up capabilities.

"IBM and Adobe are closing the gap between documents, people and enterprise systems to help ensure efficient electronic business processes across the extended enterprise," said
Brett MacIntyre, vice president for enterprise content management at IBM Software. MacIntyre said that the two companies would be able to combine IBM's enterprise content management software and Adobe's expertise in solving specific and complex document processing problems for its customers.

Specifically, the two companies are working to deliver integrated document solutions based on Adobe Form Solutions and IBM DB2 Content Manager. Initially aimed at the government market, the new solutions will integrate capabilities for Web-based forms from Adobe with the infrastructure of IBM DB2 Content Manager, with the goal of giving organizations the ability to automate their existing paper-based processes.

Partnering with Documentum, PTC, Agile

Adobe is working with Documentum to integrate the Adobe Form solutions with the Documentum enterprise content management (ECM) platform to automate and manage document-intensive business processes across major regulated industries, including financial services, manufacturing and government.

PTC and Adobe are integrating Acrobat 6.0 into Windchill ProductView, PTC's visualization tool for its product lifecycle management (PLM) solution. This integration is intended to make it easier to allow users throughout an enterprise to collaborate by improving their ability to review and markup vital product design and document information.

"Electronic documents are a critical component of the data that describes a product as it moves through its lifecycle," said Bill Berutti, senior vice president, strategy and product marketing at PTC. "Adobe Acrobat integrated into Windchill ProductView enhances our PLM solution and ensures that our customers have robust capabilities to publish, manage and view documents in PDF."

Agile Software said it is teaming with Adobe to deliver enterprise PLM solutions with the goal of improving the usability of the product record and leverages intellectual property across the supply chain. Together the two companies say they will make it easier to share, review and archive PDF files created from a variety of sources, including specialized software applications from Agile's suite of applications.

"By leveraging Adobe Acrobat technology, together we create a compelling solution to effectively manage the product lifecycle across the enterprise," said Chris Wong, executive vice president of products and technology, Agile Software. "The integration of Adobe Acrobat with the Agile PLM platform will allow Agile and Adobe customers to collaborate on, control, and securely manage their intellectual property and product lifecycle processes inside and outside the four walls of the enterprise."

In addition, Adobe is teaming with companies like Entrust and VeriSign to provide added security, trust and assurance for integrated document processes through new applications of digital signatures. Adobe and Intel are working together to promote mobile technology-based solutions that deliver high productivity for the collaborative mobile workforce, while Adobe's relationship with Access is intended to drive worldwide expansion of Adobe Reader and PDF to non-PC devices, such as set-top boxes, wireless devices and game consoles.
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