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October 12, 1998


By CBR Staff Writer

Microgen Holdings Plc, the UK-based information archiving company, is looking like a leaner, meaner organization after only three months under new management. In June, Martyn Ratcliffe, a former manager at Dell Computer Corp stepped in with an offer to put 3.5m pounds of his own money into the company in return for the position of executive chairman. Ratcliffe has now revealed the results of his strategic review with a radical re-shaping of the whole organization. Out go subsidiaries in Germany, Norway, Sweden and Denmark in a management buy-out that will give Microgen an immediate 26.25m pounds in cash. And no longer will the company be involved in the physical business of computer output to microfiche COM. While Microgen will manage the customer base, it will hand over its assets and staff and outsource the operation to Anacomp Ltd, a subsidiary of US company Anacomp Inc. Finally, there will be a rationalization of its invoice/print operations into just two sites. Ratcliffe sees its strengths as being in invoice processing and in an internet-based outsource document management service based on its Microgen Axess technology. This enables organizations to have a managed outsource service without the capital costs of traditional document management systems or the overhead costs of maintaining a database. Now Microgen is looking for acquisitions that will help its strategy and is looking to use its customer base to move into the systems integration business. The shares climbed 6.8% to 93 pence on the news.

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