Barco enhances its collaboration capabilities with the acquisition of AWIND

Regulated information
Kortrijk, Belgium, 14 February 2013 – Barco, a global leader in digital visualization and collaboration solutions, announced today that it has acquired Taiwan-based AWIND, a leading provider of wireless content sharing and WiFi-enabled presentations. This transaction advances Barco’s strategy of leveraging its strengths in visualization to establish a leadership position in professional networking and collaboration.

AWIND, established in 2003, possesses strong expertise in screen-to-screen interactive technologies, an intellectual property portfolio including 28 patents covering plug-and-show techniques, conference control, universal multi-touch dual way interactivity, and screen activity analyzing and encoding, and a product portfolio including wePresent and MirrorOP, professional wireless presentation solutions that both serve the markets for meeting rooms and education. To date, AWIND has installed its wireless content sharing solutions on more than 500,000 screens worldwide.

“The acquisition of AWIND perfectly fits within Barco’s strategy of broadening the company’s market position beyond visualization to include networking and collaboration, strengthening the company’s existing collaboration capabilities,” said Eric Van Zele, President and CEO of Barco. “Over the past few years we have been focusing on the optimization of the image quality, reliability and cost of ownership of our projectors and displays. With that effort behind us, we are now concentrating on fully enabling wireless presentation and collaboration for our customers mainly in the professional AV markets and entertainment, using our screens, in the most intuitive way possible.”

“AWIND has established a first-class reputation as a leader in wireless interactivity solutions for corporate AV and educational markets. By joining forces with AWIND, we are gaining important collaboration know-how, enhancing ClickShare’s functionality and opening the door to a number of markets we do not fully address today, notably education and corporate meeting rooms,” added Mr. Van Zele.

Addressing market trends in interactive office communication
The growing importance of mobile devices, the demand for remote collaboration and at-home working/learning along with the growing acceptance of wireless communications are all driving the trend toward ‘Bring your own device’  in which people increasingly expect to use their mobile devices – such as smart phones and tablets – in a business setting.  This trend poses a number of challenges for existing professional AV equipment.

AWIND brings Barco deep working knowledge of mobile technology and increases the value of its current products with first class collaboration solutions for customers on a worldwide basis. 

Advancing Barco’s ambition to expand beyond visualization
Barco is a world leader in visualization solutions for professional markets. The company has a stated ambition of leveraging its competitive strengths in visualization to bring state-of-the-art connectivity and interactivity to new and existing customers worldwide. 

Strengthening ClickShare’s position
ClickShare is Barco’s first product line that addresses the requirements for intuitive meeting room presentations and collaboration. Launched at the end of 2011, ClickShare was an immediate success due to its unique intuitive user interface that connects multiple laptops wirelessly to a central screen with the touch of a single button.  It has won several important awards, most recently the 'Most InAVative Collaboration Product’ award at ISE 2013.

AWIND’s technology will immediately enhance ClickShare’s functionality, primarily in the area of supporting mobile devices and apps. The addition of AWIND’s wePresent will broaden Barco’s product portfolio to cover the full spectrum of meeting rooms, from low- to high-end, enabling Barco to provide a unique offering in wireless presentation and collaboration.  

Bolsters Barco’s presence in emerging geographies
“Through AWIND Barco will not only further strengthen its geographical presence in the Asian market, but will also benefit from the high quality capabilities we have developed in the area of wireless content sharing, while AWIND will benefit from the access to Barco's global sales and services network”, concludes Mr. Kuo Lung Chang, CEO of AWIND.

AWIND will continue to develop its business with its extensive network of OEM customers and technology partners. They are of strategic importance to its continued success.

This acquisition is subject to customary closing conditions.

 

About AWIND
AWIND was established in Taipei (Taiwan) in 2003, as a designer and manufacturer of hardware and software for wireless presentation solutions. Its products are both sold under the own brand name, as OEM products, or are integrated in third party devices. The company employs 60 people, half of which work in research & design. In 2012, AWIND’s turnover amounted to approximately 6 million euro.

About Barco
Barco, a global technology company, designs and develops visualization products for a variety of selected professional markets. Barco has its own facilities for Sales & Marketing, Customer Support, R&D and Manufacturing in Europe, North America and Asia Pacific. Barco (NYSE Euronext Brussels: BAR) is active in more than 90 countries with more than 3,900 employees worldwide. Barco posted sales of 1.156 billion euro in 2012.

© Copyright 2013 by Barco



For more information, please contact

Carl Vanden Bussche
Vice President Investor Relations
Barco nv

Telephone +32 56 26 23 22
carl.vandenbussche@barco.com

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