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November 24, 1998

HP AND INDIGO SIGN R&D AGREEMENT

By CBR Staff Writer

Hewlett-Packard Co and Dutch printing company Indigo have signed a deal to explore developing future products and markets. Details about the agreement are sketchy but the companies are initially working towards producing a printing device for enterprise use, which would be positioned in the market between HP’s current product range and Indigo’s high-end line. Indigo, which is headquartered in the Netherlands and has R&D and manufacturing facilities in Israel, claims to have 50% of the market share in the digital color printing presses market. The company will bring digital offset color printing technologies such its ElectroInk high resolution liquid ink to the table in the HP deal. The company claims that its technologies allow users to produce high quality, glossy, color printing runs as short as a single copy – which facilitates personalized marketing uses. Andrew Ould, a spokesman at HP’s central R&D unit, HP Labs, stressed that the project was in its opening phase and due to the differing technologies that HP and Indigo base their printing systems on, the research effort may have no definite outcome. However, he was hopeful that there was some reasonable and decent chance that something good would come of it. Neither company would say how much R&D spending they would put into the joint venture. However, Ould did rule out the possibility of HP taking a stake in Indigo if the deal bore fruit.

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