JetForm buys Delrina's electronic forms business

JetForm Corp. last week acquired Delrina Group's electronics forms business in a pooling of the federal government's major electronic forms vendors.

JetForm Ottawa has acquired full ownership and rights to Delrina's electronic forms products and will bring on 65 people from Toronto-based Delrina. JetForm has agreed to pay Symantec Corp. about $100 million for Delrina. Symantec acquired Delrina in 1995. Symantec will retain Delrina's fax data and voice communications software lines.

Delrina had established itself as the federal leader in electronic forms particularly in the Defense Department. But during the past two years JetForm has taken on Delrina and has won over DOD and civilian customers (see chart). Delrina's product line includes its FormFlow and PerForm electronic forms products as well as workflow software. JetForm's lineup includes its JetForm Design JetForm Filler and JetForm Workflow products which are integrated with the World Wide Web.

JetForm officials said the company would gradually integrate the Delrina and JetForm products adding that Delrina users need not scrap their software investment. "For those people who don't need to make that change they don't have to " said Lynne Boyd senior vice president of government operations at JetForm.

JetForm aims "to provide a growth path for both the Delrina and JetForm customer base that will provide the best of both technologies " said John Purdon vice president of marketing at JetForm.

Scott McCready an analyst with International Data Corp. said the acquisitions "would seem to make a lot of sense." He said the companies' products have complementary strengths noting that JetForm is strong in back-end forms processing while Delrina's strength is in the forms-design component of its software.

Business as Usual for Customers

Boyd said customers will experience business as usual in the near term. Agencies with orders in the works for JetForm or Delrina products are encouraged to follow through she said. During the next six months however JetForm will "accelerate activities on how these products interwork " Boyd said. And during the next 12 to 18 months JetForm will aim to achieve "seamless" integration of the product set she added.Boyd said JetForm has the opportunity to introduce a number of technologies to the Delrina customer base. She cited the company's Web-enabled form fillers and workflow technology among other products. "This will allow them to broaden what they are doing with Delrina " Boyd said.

Delrina's forms customers will continue to receive product support through Symantec's Delrina Group for about the next six months Boyd said. At that point product support will transition to JetForm.

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