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Scanpak Completes Aviva Takeover

Scanpak will be able to integrate RFID data with legacy applications and push the information to desktops and mobile devices.
Jun 16, 2002July 16, 2002 -- One of the biggest issues many companies face when considering an RFID system is the lack of middleware available to link RFID data with their existing applications. Scanpak, a Montreal-based provider of RFID and other data collection technologies, has attempted to address that need by acquiring Aviva Solutions, also of Montreal.

Scanpak offers RFID tags and readers for asset tracking. It also offers custom applications that it hosts as an application service provider, so that customers can view data in any format they choose via a Web browser. But customers also wanted to merge that data with information in existing legacy systems, according to Frank Carzoli, Scanpak's director of sales and marketing.

"Customers are telling us that they want to take the applications we write and the RFID data and have an interface with their host mainframes," he says. "We needed a way to get information from the applications we host into their mainframe and have it updated in real time, so they can have a true picture of their business."

Aviva provides applications and development tools that make it possible to create a Web portal that acts as a front end to a company's legacy systems. Aviva's application program interfaces (APIs) and other emulation technology will make it easier to integrate Scanpak applications with legacy systems.

"We can host our customers' applications the way we do today, but with the Aviva technology, we can take data from and send data to any specific device a customer has," says Carzoli. "It can be sent to a mainframe or pushed from a mainframe to a workstation or a Palm or any mobile device."

Scanpak has had success selling RFID systems to airlines for tracking cargo and food carts. The company hopes the new technology from Aviva will enable it to go after new vertical markets, including the finance, pharmaceutical and medical industries.

Carzoli says some Scanpak customers are already using some of Aviva's technology, but it will be about six months before full integration of the products is complete. Aviva will become a division of Scanpak. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
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