USDATA announces acquisition of Wizard Information Systems

Richardson, TX - USDATA Corporation, a supplier of industrial automation software solutions, announced October 1its acquisition of all of the issued and outstanding stock of Wizard Information Systems Ltd., a privately held company located in the United Kingdom and a major distributor of USDATA.


Richardson, TX - USDATA Corporation , a supplier of industrial automation software solutions, announced October 1its acquisition of all of the issued and outstanding stock of Wizard Information Systems Ltd ., a privately held company located in the United Kingdom and a major distributor of USDATA. In addition to expanding USDATA's portfolio of software assets, the acquisition provides direct access to new customers and markets by more than doubling USDATA's capabilities in sales, support, and delivery in Western Europe.

"We believe this acquisition substantially increases our participation in the European market and provides a software and services platform to propel our future growth," said Bob Merry, president and ceo of USDATA. "USDATA will now have direct access to many new customers and projects in Europe's largest industrial automation markets and the Wizard acquisition enables us to deliver a portfolio of products and services that comprise a total solution designed to meet the industrial automation needs of our customers."

As a result of the acquisition, Wizard will now be a wholly owned subsidiary of USDATA, managed by a separate board of directors. Adrian Wise and Dave Moody, formerly principal shareholders of Wizard, will serve as board members of the new subsidiary and retain day-to-day management control, ensuring uninterrupted service for Wizard's existing customers as the unified company moves forward.

"USDATA and Wizard customers will benefit tremendously from this transaction," said Mr. Wise. "We have invested heavily in building solutions for customers using USDATA's products in conjunction with our software, services, and know-how." Mr. Moody added, "USDATA now offers a more compelling solution for customers looking to meet their operations and business demands for less than they are currently paying to support closed, proprietary, and antiquated systems. Customers and partners throughout Western Europe will be able to draw upon our expertise in replacing these systems."

Wizard currently provides software and services for quality management, forecasting and planning, and scheduling applications in addition to USDATA's FactoryLink and Xfactory products. Wizard has offices in the United Kingdom, France, and the Netherlands.

USDATA acquired Wizard for $140,000 in cash; 220,752 shares of its common stock and 16,800 shares of its Series B Preferred Stock. In addition, the selling principals may receive up to 515,088 shares of USDATA common stock and 39,200 shares of USDATA Series B Preferred Stock based upon continued employment over 3 years and the future performance of Wizard.

USDATA today also announced that third quarter revenues are expected to fall significantly below second quarter levels largely due to a general economic slowdown in the industrial sectors. "Although we are disappointed with our third quarter performance, we think that the Wizard acquisition will help us develop a more robust sales pipeline and recover faster in this economy," said Mr. Merry.

Control Engineering Daily News Desk
Gary A. Mintchell, senior editor

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