Venlo, The Netherlands, 30 November 2010 – Océ, an international leader in document management and delivery, today expressed its pleasure at the grant of EUR 1.2 million towards the establishment of its Document Services Valley open innovation center. The Dutch Ministry of Economic Affairs and the Province of Limburg have granted this subsidy as part of its support of a program known as Pieken in de Delta (or Peaks in the Delta).
“This subsidy will accelerate the growth of Document Services Valley,” said Harry Loozen, Senior Vice President Corporate Public Affairs and Sustainability at Océ. “We are convinced that open innovation for document services will make a valuable contribution to the economic growth ambitions of the southeastern Netherlands. That is exactly the intention of the Pieken in de Delta program.”
The Endowed Canon-Océ Chair in Business Services Innovation
This encouraging news follows from the mid-October visit to the Dutch Municipality of Venlo by Fujio Mitarai, Chairman and CEO of Canon Inc., the majority shareholder of Océ. During his visit, Mr Mitarai presented City Mayor Hubert Bruls with a gift: the Endowed Canon-Océ Chair in Business Services Innovation. The Endowed Canon-Océ Chair will be established at the Venlo campus of Maastricht University.
The launch of the Document Services Valley open innovation center results from Océ joining forces with the University of Maastricht and Exser, a Dutch institute for service innovation. Within Document Services Valley, companies and educational institutions will work together on developing new document services. In an open innovation setting, these partners can benefit from shared facilities and knowledge. The combination of these assets will lead to the establishment of new start up companies.
The New World of Work requires new document services
Document Services Valley is an answer to the demand for development of information and knowledge processes. “Digitization has changed the role of paper,” says Ron Notermans, Vice President Research and Development of Océ. “The management and dissemination of information have also changed. For every 10 euro spent on document management, only one is actually spent on printing.”
Document Services Valley focuses on new document-oriented services. Within the open innovation center, companies, governments and institutions will work together on themes such as service security and working independently of time and place – otherwise known as the New World of Work. For example, where employees once kept their hard copy files as reference, they now bring their references with them, be it digitally or online. People work from home, at weekends, take international teleconference calls and need to have the information at their fingertips – whenever and wherever they are carrying out their duties.
Océ’s definition of document services
With the New World of Work becoming more prevalent, there is a gap between how documents can easily be distributed in the right format, and how documents can be appropriately consumed. To manage this, companies devise a range of processes such as meeting protocols, filing systems, building specifications, reading material for educational purposes, or reference material.
What complicates these factors is that in different situations, different preferences of different people lead to different channels, whether it’s a laptop, paper, Smartphone, iPad, e-reader, tablet PC or even text-to-speech format. The document infrastructure of today is evolving towards cloud storage, cloud computing, on-the-fly conversion, delivery of the right document, in the right format, in the right place, on the right apparatus, which is up to date and has the best functionality. All of this complexity is the area in which Océ aims to innovate document services.
The first start-up company and projects
The first start-up to emerge from Document Services Valley has already been established. The start-up, called Fabaliz, provides services in the Dutch market that enable graphic arts companies to offer photo merchandising to consumers. In addition, there are also projects in the area of intensive paper processes such as judicial files and files requiring complex installations, such as aeronautic or chemical installations, and in the area of medical documentation, personal details and security.
Combining assets in the southeastern Netherlands
Document Services Valley will be based in Venlo where the facilities of Océ and the knowledge of approximately 200 Océ knowledge workers in the field of document services management can be tapped into and, wherever possible, the collaborating partners from the Eindhoven-Leuven-Aachen triangle and the German Ruhrgebied. It is expected that by 2015, Document Services Valley will create employment for some 600 people.