You can stop holding your breath. Lexmark won't be making any announcements about its “strategic alternatives” during the Inspire conference taking place this week in Orlando, Fla.

Rumors have been flying about a potential buy-out of the Lexington, Ky.-based Lexmark since its announcement last October that it had hired Goldman Sachs as an adviser to help explore alternatives.

During his conference keynote, President of Lexmark Enterprise Software, Reynolds Bish said he thought the company would make an unspecified "announcement" within the next 30 days.

Speculation has pinpointed PC maker Lenovo as a potential buyer.

While the marriage of Lexmark's printer business and Lenovo's PCs would be a logical move, it leaves open the fate of the company's services and software divisions.

Splitting the services and software businesses from each other wouldn't make sense, especially now that Lexmark's Kofax acquisition is picking up steam.

Another option may be that the potential buyer wants the entire business.

Whatever the outcome, the Kofax mojo shows no signs of slowing down.

The Next Iteration

Yesterday at the Inspire conference it unveiled the release of TotalAgility version 7.3. Although an incremental release, this announcement shouldn't be underestimated for what it contains and signals for Lexmark’s — and Kofax’s — credentials as a digital transformation specialist.

According to Lexmark, v7.3 delivers the first unified platform delivering omnichannel customer engagement and digital transformation across multiple use cases.

The release of Kofax TotalAgility version 7.3 (KTA) is a continuation of the Kofax digital business strategy. 

The KTA platform platform now offers upgraded and integrated capabilities for omnichannel capture, process automation, dynamic case management and information integration that together provide end-to-end digital processes.

Kofax also introduced its new Communications Manager (CCM) 5.0, which comes with pre-built integration with Kofax TotalAgility, Kofax SignDoc and Perceptive Workplace to simplify digital and paper-based customer communications processes.

Workplace is notable in that it provides a place where workers and outside partners can collaborate, but unlike Box, for example, that space is located in the CCM rather than in the cloud. Lexmark has also released several mobile solutions that streamline business processes and improve the customer experience. Among them are:

  • Mobile SDK: Enables real time data extraction and new account onboarding
  • Analytics for Mobile: A pre-built analytics dashboards that works “out of the box” to track application performance and provides actionable insight into the array of Kofax mobile frameworks

No Newcomer to the Digital World

Kofax, though, is not jumping on the digital bandwagon here. Digital transformation has been its business model from the beginning, long before Lexmark bought it in a $1 billion deal in March 2015.

Learning Opportunities

The acquisition followed shortly after Kofax had bought customer communications vendor Aia for $19.5 million.

Take a closer look at Kofax’s First Mile strategy and what you get is the digital transformation of document processes.

First Mile describes the initial information-intensive interactions customers have with an organization, such as loan applications, claims submissions and new account openings, and the challenge of interacting with a business via multiple devices and methods of communication.

All of this feeds into Lexmark’s vision of digital transformation.

Lexmark and Digital Transformation

“When we talk about digital transformation and what we want to do is to place ourselves in a position to support organizations that are going through the digital transformation process and offer them the tools and technology to help create digital engagement and digital interactions with their customers,” Jeroen Huinink, VP product marketing for customer communications management told CMSWire.

He points out that the Lexmark starting position is that digital transformation is not just about business processes, but about the way people interact with each other. Applied to business scenarios it means applying technology to the way people work.

“Digital transformation ... is also about improving operational processes or create new business models that are not possible without the use of this digital technology. Digital is an enabler of change,” he said.

In light of yesterday's releases, Huinink said, “I see this as a natural extension of what we have been doing for years, notably helping firms with the digitization of paper-based processes — whether that is something that allows users to capture an idea at the point of origin, or whether it has to do with customer communications."

The KTA platform will be a core part of the company's business strategy between now and 2018 — acquisition or no acquisition.

Over that period, Huinink says, Lexmark will be looking at deeper integration of the Kofax and Lexmark platforms as well as releases designed to strengthen the mobile management capabilities that they can offer.