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CompuRad acquires PACS family of Star Technologies


CompuRad acquires PACS family of Star TechnologiesSale marks medical imaging exit for StarTucson, AZ-based CompuRad has broadened its product line with the purchase of the PACS products of Star Technologies, which has elected to exit

CompuRad acquires PACS family of Star Technologies

Sale marks medical imaging exit for Star

Tucson, AZ-based CompuRad has broadened its product line with the purchase of the PACS products of Star Technologies, which has elected to exit medical imaging in favor of the broader document imaging market. Star's technology provides CompuRad with all the products needed to be a full-line PACS company, according to Cary Cole, vice president of marketing.

Under the terms of the deal, CompuRad gets Star's Medical Image Management Systems (MIMS) technology, which includes the DICOM 3.0-compliant Star Image Management Server (IMS) and Film Image Scan System (FISS) software. CompuRad executives believe that the move will enable the company to capitalize on the rapidly growing PACS and miniPACS markets.

"The only thing we were missing was an archive, and this is a very good one," Cole said. "We're still evaluating whether we're going to pursue filmless hospital contracts directly, or through OEMs and VARs."

The acquisition will complement several CompuRad product introductions in 1997, which have allowed the company to participate in some miniPACS implementations such as in-house image distribution systems. The company's iNet Pro package provides support for DICOM query-and-retrieve storage classes and also qualifies as a DICOM storage-class provider and storage-class user. The other introduction, iView Pro, is a DICOM-compliant, Windows NT-based viewing software package.

For Star, the sale marks the end of a turbulent experience in medical imaging. After former OEM partner GE Medical Systems abruptly ended its agreement to buy Star CT processors in 1995, Star debuted several products, including FISS and IMS, to make up for the huge revenue shortfall it experienced. While Star believed that the MIMS technology remained strong, it had reached a point where it required additional investments in development and marketing resources, said Robert Compton, Star's president and CEO. The company instead decided to focus on the document imaging marketplace.

The transaction is valued at up to $1.4 million, including 100,000 shares of CompuRad stock and royalties on future software sales over a five-year period. Under the terms of the sale, Sterling, VA-based Star retains the right to use the technologies in nonmedical imaging markets.

In other Star news, the company has acquired the PowerScan and StageWorks document imaging and processing software from Intrafed for $1.9 million and up to 2.6 million shares of Star common stock. Star has created a new subsidiary, PowerScan, to further develop and market these products.

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