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Print management and document workflow developer Lexmark has announced that it has agreed to buy enterprise content management vendor Perceptive Software (news, site) for US $280 million.

Although Lexmark already has some document management capabilities through its DocMP application, an application which manages document workflows from capture to storage using Lexmark’s Multifunction Peripherals (MFPs), buying Perceptive will add a full enterprise content management system that has already made in-roads into the education, healthcare and government segments.

As well as well as moving into the ECM space where it will also be able to market its extensive MFP line of products, Lexmark says the deal will provide it with new revenue streams in software maintenance and professional services that are not paper usage dependent.

Perceptive and ImageNow

While Perceptive has a number of different products, its ImageNow platform is the focus of this acquisition, which differs from other document management platforms by adding its technology to a specific business process rather than applying generic document management software across an enterprise.

Easily and quickly integrated with many ERP, CRM and line-of-business applications, the last upgrade to ImageNow came with eForms, workflow views and out-of-office workflow routing.

eForms

eForms allows enterprises bring clients who are not licensed ImageNow users into the workflow. Using HTML forms, an enterprise can post forms on external websites, intranets or portals where clients can fill them out and post them back directly into the ImageNow workflow.

Workflow Views

Workflow views ensure that the documents intended for a given individual land only on that individual’s desktop. It ensures that individual users work only on the specific set of documents intended for them without having to navigate through other unrelated and often sensitive documents.

Out-Of-Office Workflow

Out-Of-Office Workflow ensures that the entire workflow can continue as normal, even in the absence of key players. It allows administrators to send work automatically to others when someone goes missing, while alarms are set off when a workflow queue is unattended.

ImageNow also comes with a Global Edition, which means it comes in a number of different language editions including French, German, Spanish and English and 43 Microsoft Windows locales.

A final point worth noting is that in the fiscal year 2009, Perceptive reported US $84 million in revenues -- an increase of 22% over 2008. While the company said at the time it was expecting something similar this year, no actual figures have been released.