LizardTech (and DjVu) acquired by Celartem Technology USA
a report by PlanetDjVu, June 20, 2003

LizardTech, Inc and Celartem Technology USA, Inc. both announced today a definitive agreement for the acquisition of LizardTech by Celartem Technology USA.

According to the press release, "LizardTech, Inc. employs 29 people and is being acquired for $11.25 million in cash. Under terms of the agreement, LizardTech will operate as a separate unit within the Celartem Group of companies and will be known as "LizardTech Inc., a Celartem Company." LizardTech will maintain its existing U.S. operations headquartered in Seattle and European efforts based in London. Over time, R&D and sales will be merged with existing Celartem eforts in Europe and Japan. Celartem Group officers and board of directors will oversee LizardTech operations, as well as for Extensis, the other Celartem Group subsidiary."

According to the statement from LizardTech, "Interim LizardTech CEO Scot Land will remain in place until a new CEO is appointed by Celartem."

The press release from Celartem is available here.
The press release from LizardTech is available here.

How will this acquisition affect DjVu?  We really don't know. We will just have to wait to see what happens now.

As reported earlier in the News section of PlanetDjVu, DjVu suffers from the following problems:

1. The bugs in the DjVu browser plugin are not being fixed.
2. LizardTech is not responding to customer and press inquiries about DjVu.
3. LizardTech is not communicating with DjVuLibre, and has released a version of DjVu
    (Version 24) that is incompatable with DjVuLibre.
4. LizardTech will not respond to our inquiries about DjVu licensing.
5. LizardTech will not correct false comparisons of DjVu to PDF.
6. DjVu is currently priced 5 to 10 times higher than PDF.

Will these problems be resolved? We took a look at the Celartem website for clues. One thing there that raises concern is that when we linked to the product page for the "VFZ plugin for Adobe Acrobat", the product page says "This product is due to be released early in 2002". We have to ask why a product page that is clearly over a year out of date is still on the main Celartem website?  Despite this concern, we really don't have enough information to speculate on what will happen to DjVu now.

Perhaps things will improve for DjVu when "LizardTech, a Celartem Company" gets a new CEO. At that time, we will invite the CEO to re-establish communications with the rest of the DjVu user community (DjVuLibre, PlanetDjVu, JRA etc. and you, the customer and user of DjVu technology).

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