A new company, Lucidea Corporation (http://www.lucidea. com), has been formed through the re-organization of SydneyPLUS and its acquired companies. Lucidea brings together the products and services of SydneyPLUS, Inmagic, Cuadra Associates, Argus.net, LawPort, Lookup Precision, and Incite Software Solutions, all owned by Ron Aspe and previously operated as separate companies. These companies previously operated independently, though in close consultation with each other and taking advantage of shared administrative support. They will now combine into a single company under a unified executive management team, with Ron Aspe as the President and Chief Executive Officer and Phil Green as Chief Operating Officer. Green was previously CEO of Inmagic.
Lucidea reports that more than 2,300 organizations in 50 countries make use of its products. The new company employs a workforce of 80 individuals. In addition to its global headquarters in Richmond, BC in Canada, Lucidea will maintain office locations in Nottingham in the United Kingdom, as well as the former Inmagic headquarters in Woburn, MA, the Cuadra facilities in Los Angeles, CA, and in Moorpark, CA. Lucidea is privately owned by Ron Aspe.
Lucidea offers a product suite that includes those developed by SydneyPLUS and by its acquired companies. Each of the product brands as they were known before the corporate restructuring will be maintained. In the arena of library automation, Lucidea will offer the SydneyPLUS LMS, Inmagic Genie, and CuadraSTAR Libraries. For museum management, products include CuadraSTAR Museums and ARGUS. net. Knowledge management or content management platforms include Inmagic Presto, SydneyPLUS Information Manager, Inmagic DB/TextWorks, and ISS Messenger Workplace. Lookup Precision and LawPort provide support for the operation of law offices and other legal organizations. CuadraSTAR Knowledge Center for Archives is available for the management of archives.
The company provides technology products in what is generally considered the special libraries sector, through many of the organizations are not necessarily traditional libraries. The types of organizations Lucidea targets include law firms, corporations, pharmaceutical companies, museums, archives, and governmental agencies at the federal, state, and local level. Key competitors to Lucidea in the special libraries arena include EOS International and Soutron International.
Strategic Continuity and Convergence
According to Chief Operating Officer Phil Green, the core message that Lucidea wants to convey to its current and future clients is that this transition will not bring disruption. The company will continue to maintain all of its products and that the same individuals will continue in their sales and support roles. The existing brands and websites will continue, though subsumed under Lucidea as its new corporate identity.
This consolidation will bring operational efficiencies by unifying the sales, marketing, and development efforts of each of the antecedent companies. This consolidation will allow the company to provide better service to its customers by having the ability to allocate resources as needed. With single sales and marketing forces, the company can more strategically target its products to potential customers. In a mid-sized company of 80 employees, having separate independent efforts in these areas has less impact than a unified force. Prior to this business transition, the only aspect of the company that was shared across the antecedent companies was administrative support functions such as accounting and human relations.
A unified research and development operation will result in better integration among its products, which will be especially helpful for those customers that make use of multiple products from the company. It will also facilitate product the consolidation of technology components among the different products. One of the strategic development directions involves the separation of workflow products from search and discovery tools. The company, for example, can position Presto as a search and discovery engine able to work across any of the company's ILS products, such as Inmagic Genie, SydneyPLUS LMS, or CuadraSTAR Libraries; or through federated search with external or internal content resources. Some consolidation of back-end technologies has already taken place, with the SydneyPLUS platform now underpinning some of its acquired products, such as the ARGUS.net product for museums and for LawPort.
The establishment of Lucidea follows a sequence of events of almost 25 years of developing products and acquiring companies or technologies oriented to special libraries and related organizations. Some of the major business transitions include:
- June 2013: Lucidea formed through the consolidation of the SydneyPLUS family of companies.
- January 2012: In a subsequent transaction, SydneyPLUS acquired the assets of remaining from its 2011 acquisition of Inmagic, including the Presto technology.
- October 2011: SydneyPLUS acquired the library automation assets of Inmagic, including DB/TextWorks, Genie, and the Inmagic brand and trademark (see “SydneyPLUS acquires Inmagic Assets: Continued Consolidation in the Special Library and Knowledge Management Solutions Arena” Smart Libraries Newsletter, Dec 2011).
- May 2010: SydneyPLUS acquired LookUp Precision from Advanced Productivity Software. This product, primarily targeting large law firms, performs use tracking, cost recovery, and password management of online legal resources.
- March 2010: SydneyPLUS acquired Questor Systems, a California-based company which had created the ARGUS platform used for the management of collections of physical artifacts, such as those in museums and archives.
- July 2008: SydneyPLUS acquired Cuadra Associates, a company that develops and supports the STAR family of products for the automation of libraries, museums, and media collections and for knowledge management and records management.
- August 2007: SydneyPLUS acquired SV Technology, developer of the LawPort platform that provides a knowledge management platform for legal organizations based on Microsoft SharePoint.
- 2001: SydneyPLUS acquires Incite Software Solutions, formerly known as InfoNet Software Solutions and before that as OSIWare, a company specializing in messaging and e-mail services (www.iss.ca).
- January 2000: International Library Systems was renamed to SydneyPLUS International
- March 1989: Ron Aspe forms International Library Systems through an employee buy-out of the library automation product of Sydney Development Corporation.