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Arbortext Extends Enterprise Publishing Leadership with Acquisition of Advent3B2

Arbortext Acquires UK-Based Advent Publishing Systems, LTD.

Extends Enterprise Publishing Leadership, Continues Aggressive Growth Plans

Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA and London, UK. October 13, 2004.

Arbortext, the leading provider of XML-based Enterprise Publishing Software, today announced it has completed the acquisition of Advent Publishing Systems, Ltd. (Advent3B2). Arbortext's acquisition of Advent3B2 combines two leading publishing software companies and continues its successful track record in expanding its leadership position in the Enterprise Publishing Software industry.

Arbortext's Enterprise Publishing Software helps companies streamline and automate their information creation and publishing process to deliver information that is more accurate, relevant and timely. Through the acquisition of Advent3B2 and its product line, Arbortext extends the benefits of enterprise publishing to design-intensive and complex documents such as financial reports, marketing collateral, consumer catalogs, directories and journals. Using Arbortext Enterprise Publishing Software, organizations can automate the publishing process in order to deliver better information faster and at a lower cost.

"This acquisition underscores Arbortext's strategy to become a leader in Enterprise Publishing," said Mark Walter, Senior Analyst, The Gilbane Report. "The 3B2 software complements Arbortext's well-known XML editing tools and will enable Arbortext to target more typographically complex publishing applications in the corporate setting as well as make a more concerted effort to sell into commercial STM publishing, where many publishers are in the midst of migrating to XML."

Commenting on the acquisition, Ken Swanson, Senior Vice President of Operations at Bowne & Co., Inc. had this to say, "This is exciting news. As a long-time customer of Advent3B2, we've been very successful with the development of the Advent3B2 composition engine for our future publishing initiatives. I am confident the combined companies will enable us to take advantage of a stronger product line to fulfill our plans for enterprise publishing. I expect the combined companies will take advantage of each other'engths, making for a stronger partnership that is built on custocus and teamwork for us."

Raymond Schiavone, President and CEO for Arbortext, said "The acquisition of Advent3B2 is consistent with our growth strategy, business goals and commitment to our customers. Advent3B2 has a long and distinguished history in software that automates the publishing of documents with complex layout and design, outstanding talent, and a strong customer base. Advent3B2's technology enables us to extend enterprise publishing solutions to additional applications, departments and organizations."

"We are excited to join Arbortext and be part of a well known and respected team that is revolutionizing how organizations publish information," said George Punton, Advent3B2's Managing Director and CEO. "This acquisition is great news for Advent3B2 customers because it reinforces and protects their investment as we move toward standards-based publishing platforms. Advent3B2 customers can take advantage of our combined efforts to develop and deliver a wider range of high quality products and services for enterprise publishing applications throughout the organization."

With this acquisition, Arbortext will broaden its product offerings and grow its customer base with the inclusion of over 300 Advent3B2 customers. Arbortext will also expand its operations by combining the Advent3B2 development, professional services and sales and marketing capabilities through the integration of its Swindon, United Kingdom and Konstanz, Germany offices.

About Advent Publishing Systems, Ltd.

Advent3B2 develops and markets a comprehensive suite of innovative publishing software based on the latest industry standards including XML. Its growing, global customer base includes The European Parliament, Boeing, GlaxoSmithKline, the US Patent and Trademark Office, Bertelsmann and the Canadian House of Commons.

About Arbortext

Arbortext is the leading provider of Enterprise Publishing Software that enables organizations to create and automatically publish large amounts of information, such as technical manuals, pharmaceutical product information, legal information and software documentation. Enterprises around the world use our software to publish in multiple languages to multiple audiences in multiple hardcopy and electronic output formats. Arbortext's software is installed at over 1,400 organizations worldwide.

Current customers include American Express Financial Services, Audi, Boeing, Bombardier, British Aerospace, Caterpillar, DaimlerChrysler, Ericsson Telecom, Ford, General Electric, GM, IBM, International Thomson Publishing, Lucent, Nokia, Nortel Networks, PeopleSoft, Pfizer, Ricoh, Sun Microsystems, Toyota, United Airlines, Volkswagen and Volvo. Arbortext is a founding member and active participant in both the XML Activity of the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) and the Organization for the Advancement of Structured Information Standards (OASIS). Headquartered in Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA, Arbortext has offices around the world. For more information, please visit


Arbortext, Inc.
Beth Ambaruch
Tel: +1 734-327-6014

David Stone
Tel: 312-228-6967

Glynis Monighan
Tel: +44 (0) 870 7778555


Additional References

  • Arbortext web site. See also the press room.

  • Advent3B2 web site

  • "Arbortext Buys Advent." By Mark Walter. In Seybold News & Views on Professional Publishing Tools Volume 10, Number 02 (October 13, 2004). "In a move that significantly bolsters its print page-composition capabilities, Arbortext announced it is acquiring Advent for an undisclosed sum. Advent is the developer of 3B2, a high-end page-composition system that is well-suited to automated publishing of XML content. Arbortext develops a suite of tools designed for standards-based editing and publishing. Founded in the mid-1980s, Advent, along with rivals such as Xyvision and Miles 33, is one of the few suppliers of automated composition systems to have survived the onslaught of desktop publishing. The company claims to have about 300 installations in both commercial and corporate publishing. This acquisition comes on the heels of Arbortext's 13th consecutive quarter of record revenue. It underscores Arbortext's strategy to become a leader in 'enterprise publishing' by supplying software that automates both print and electronic page production. The 3B2 software complements Arbortext's well-known XML editing tools and will enable Arbortext to target more typographically complex publishing applications in the corporate setting, as well as to make a more concerted effort to sell into commercial STM publishing, where many publishers are in the midst of migrating to XML... Advent finally gains the marketing and sales presence in North America that it has always lacked. Advent customers will no doubt be relieved to see 3B2 in the hands of a larger software firm that is committed to serving the XML publishing market. The only ones complaining will be Advent's competitors, who will no doubt be dismayed that Advent, after more than a decade of failing to establish itself in North America, will now have its product sold under the brand of one of the best-known American suppliers of XML publishing products..."

  • "Arbortext Version 5.1 Supports Darwin Information Typing Architecture (DITA)." In September 2004 Arbortext, Inc. announced the Version 5.1 release of its enterprise publishing software with enhanced support of the Darwin Information Typing Architecture (DITA) specification. Arbortext's XML-based single-source publishing architecture "helps companies capture their information in a single media-independent form and automatically publish from XML to multiple media types, including Web, print, CD-ROM and wireless devices." Arbortext's software is applicable especially to the production of catalogs, datasheets, operating instructions, user guides, service manuals, training courses, technical journals, reference publications and other complex documents. The Arbortext Version 5.1 release features several enhancements for DITA. The Darwin Information Typing Architecture was originally designed by IBM, and is now under development in the OASIS DITA Technical Committee. DITA is an architecture for creating topic-oriented, information-typed content that can be reused and single-sourced in a variety of ways. It is also an architecture for creating new information types and describing new information domains based on existing types and domains. This allows groups to create very specific, targeted document type definitions using a process called specialization, while still sharing common output transforms and design rules developed for more general types and domains. Five new document types have been added for DITA support in Arbortext Version 5.1 (Topic, Task, Reference, Concept, and Ditabase) these types enable authors to create content based on the DITA methodology. Arbortext now provides custom table support: "Arbortext 5.1 supports custom tables, also referred to as semantic tables, which not only conforms to DITA's table models (simpletable, choicetable) and properties, but also allows users to select their own tags to be displayed and edited in a tabular form." The Arbortext Version 5.1 software includes 'Conref' support: "Conref is DITA's inclusion method used to include content from another file, which enables efficient reuse of information"...

Prepared by Robin Cover for The XML Cover Pages archive.

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