Heidelberg has acquired German software developer Crispy Mountain as the latest part of its ongoing digital transformation.
Mainz-based Crispy Mountain offers Keyline, a cloud-based MIS for print businesses, and Heidelberg’s aim is to work with the company to expand its new industry platform HEI.OS.
Among other things, Heidelberg said printing companies will be able to obtain a large number of applications from an app store.
By connecting Heidelberg’s existing software offerings around Prinect, Heidelberg ID and the Heidelberg Assistant, the manufacturer said the number of customers “is set to grow rapidly”.
HEI.OS will be open to all manufacturers in the printing industry, with the intention “to give printers easier access to comprehensive services at the lowest possible administrative burden”. Third-party suppliers will also be able to create tailor-made offers for printing companies via the platform.
The Keyline MIS is designed exclusively for operation in the cloud and for further development towards eco-systems. Using web-based and mobile technologies, it enables users to calculate and produce significantly faster and more reliably, while reducing costs and minimising errors, according to the developer.
Keyline will now be expanded with all necessary functions for Heidelberg’s three market segments; commercial, label and packaging.
Heidelberg is already gradually converting the sale of individual software licences to a usage-oriented subscription offering and therefore realigning its traditional software business to cloud technology.
A Heidelberg spokesperson told PrintWeek: “While Crispy Mountain’s own product, Keyline, is very good and running, the main logic behind this takeover is that we will have specialists on cloud platforms and software, which we need immediately to build up our platform that we are working on for the whole industry.
“We are always looking for companies who can support us in our digital roadmap and software is key. That was the reason why we noticed that there was this interesting start-up close to Heidelberg that could help us.”
Resolve Business Management will continue to distribute Keyline in the UK and Ireland on behalf of Cloud to Print, which finalised a deal to market the system in the UK last year.
Cloud to Print managing director Paul Warren told PrintWeek: “From my perspective in terms of the UK and Cloud to Print, it’s business as usual.
“Having the backing of a massive brand such as that to invest in product development and infrastructure, making Keyline the centre of their new plans for a cloud-based architecture of software that brings the industry together, is really exciting.”