KPG to Acquire RealTimeImage’s Graphic Arts Biz

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By: Jim Rosenberg

Kodak Polychrome Graphics (KPG) of Norwalk, Conn., signed a letter of intent today to acquire the graphic arts division of RealTimeImage Inc. (RTI) of San Bruno, Calif. KPG said it will make RealTimeProof products for Web-based, high-resolution collaborative proofing and approval management part of its proofing solutions. Those KPG products include the Matchprint Virtual Proofing System, which relies on RTI technology.

RealTimeImage said it will focus on its healthcare imaging operations.

According to Jeff Jacobson, KPG’s CEO, the deal will create a “complete range of monitor proofing options, from soft proofing systems to remote proofing applications to color-critical virtual proofing solutions.” He added that RealTimeProof core technologies may “further enhance KPG’s color imaging expertise” for its graphics products.

Expected to close by the end of February for undisclosed terms, the acquisition will move RTI graphic arts employees, led by Executive Vice President Yehuda Messinger and including R&D, sales and technical support staff, to KPG. Products that will move to KGP are RealTimeProof ASP (Application Service Provider), RealTimeProof Express, RealTimeProof Private Label, RealTimeProof Partner, and RealTimeProof Classic.

KPG investors include KPG co-owner Eastman Kodak and Scitex Corp. Ltd. It offers a range of computer-to-plate and conventional lithographic plate products, digital halftone, virtual, inkjet, and analog proofing products, digital printing applications, color workflow tools, consulting services and Kodak branded graphic arts films.

RealTimeProof’s Pixels on Demand streaming technology enables viewing of gigabytes of high-resolution files in seconds, even over a dial-up connection, using only a Web browser and a free downloadable plug-in.

Server-based RealTimeProof ASP allows users (who subscribe monthly) to offer customers access to jobs in process without upfront costs. RealTimeProof Express offers high-volume workflows the same proofing management efficiencies with the additional ability to quickly stream high-resolution files from a local server. RealTimeProof Private Label provides a customized and branded service. RealTimeProof Partner is a scalable image-streaming engine that plugs the RealTimeProof engine into any existing digital solution. The original product, RealTimeProof Classic, provides full-resolution client-server online proofing as part of a customer’s local area network.

KPG’s Matchprint virtual proofing consists of customized CRT monitors, proprietary color management technologies and Web-based image viewing and collaboration tools from RealTimeImage. It is compatible with such graphic arts file formats as Scitex CT/LW, Tiff-IT, PDF, PS, EPS and Tiff, and uses an ASP model built on a secure and robust database for users’ access to files via standard Web browsers.

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