Saturday, January 05, 2008

Agfa Offers?

I'm currently onboard the Celebrity Millenium, en route back to Ft. Lauderdale. We were supposed to stop in Haiti yesterday, but the weather kept the ship out of port, so we had an extra day at sea. I really enjoy those anyway, so it wasn't a total loss, but the seas were as rough as I've seen them in the Caribbean, and we were all staggering about like, well, drunken sailors. No one became sea-sick, at least not obviously.

A friend who works for a PACS company (not Agfa) sent me this exerpt from Diagnostic Imaging:
From DI Scan Jan 3, 2008

Rumors that Agfa is for up sale gained credence this week. After vehemently denying this scuttlebutt for months, the company acknowledged that offers have been made and that it would be following up on them. CEO Jo Cornu has been instructed by Agfa's board of directors to "actively look into the expressions of interest that the company recently received," according to the company. Since the spring, Agfa has been working on a demerger that would split the company into three pieces. One will be healthcare. A source at Agfa told DI SCAN that the sale of any part of Agfa is highly unlikely until the demerger is complete. The process, which was to be completed by the end of this year, could take until spring or summer 2008.

I reported most of this in a previous blog entry. Now, I wonder which company has offered to purchase Agfa Healthcare. Hmmmm. Seems to me there aren't all that many who could pony up that kind of cash. Again, the first two on my list would be Siemens and Cerner. But you never know. There might be all kinds of venture capitalists out there wanting to take on a challenge.

Speaking of Agfa, I had the chance to read Alan Cooper's , "The Inmates Are Running The Asylum" from cover to cover as my "cruise book," and I found it very educational. Yes, Agfa Impax 6.x was the PACS designed theoretically with Cooper's methods, personnas and so forth. As near as I can tell, the process got derailed somewhere between the creation of the radiologist personna and the design of what this personna might actually want in a PACS. They should have used ME as the personna. Then the thing would have been perfect (or might not have worked at all!!)


I was sent this link from Reuters concerning a possible suitor. This is the company that bought Chrysler from Damlier Benz. Interesting possibility, eh?

BRUSSELS, Dec 12 (Reuters ) - U.S. private equity firm Cerberus is considering a takeover of troubled Belgian imaging technology group Agfa-Gevaert (AGFB.BR: Quote, Profile, Research), a report in Belgian daily De Standaard said on Wednesday, quoting anonymous sources.
The company, which specializes in hospital imaging systems and top-end printers for publishers and newspapers, reiterated last week that it planned to split into three listed companies next year but also said that its board, which is meeting on Wednesday, was open to outside offers.
Agfa had planned to list Agfa Graphics, Agfa Health Care and Agfa Materials this year but has postponed that until mid-2008.
Previous press reports said senior company officials had been approached by potential investors.

Since its listing in 1999, Agfa has undergone a seemingly endless restructuring to cut costs and switch its products to digital from analogue technology.

I guess we'll have to wait and see. This would certainly be an interesting combination...Chrysler and Agfa. Perhaps I can predict the next PACS line. How about Viper PACS? Fast and sleek. Or perhaps the Town and Country practical line? Nah....we'll probably just get a Neon.


Anonymous said... takes you to Seimens

Anonymous said...

Cerberus used to be the name of a former division of Siemens. No relation to the Cerberus Capital that is mentioned in the original post.

Anonymous said...

Sound like when they peeled away the photo division....let's see who is out in the cold after the demerger...maybe some of the "management" who sacrificed the photo division ...

Anonymous said...

Abruptly removed from
The Customer Service Coordinator is responsible for processing and follow-up of spare part orders for Siemens Healthcare Diagnostics Field Service and AGFA field service, dealers, and end-user customers (orders are received via phone, fax and email); performing related functions such as tracing shipments, working with warehouse in preparation of accurate ...

Someone let the cat out of the bag?