Translation From PR-Speak to English of Selected Portions of Adobe’s ‘FAQ’ Regarding Their Acquisition of Macromedia

Said FAQ is available in convenient PDF format here.


Why is Adobe acquiring Macromedia?

Adobe’s mission has always been to help people and businesses communicate better. Macromedia’s mission has been to provide a rich media experience. Together, we share a vision for the future and with the combination of the two companies — our products, technologies and people — we will enable the creation and delivery of compelling content and experiences across multiple operating systems, devices and media.

Dude, we just bought the only significant competitor to several of our flagship applications. We didn’t buy Macromedia, we bought the market.


Why are the companies joining now?

Both companies are experiencing great success and momentum and have great opportunities ahead of them, and believe that together, they will be better able to achieve their combined vision with greater synergy. We also believe the joining of two healthy companies will lead to a more successful combined company.

We’re joining now because Macromedia said yes to our offer.


What is the mission of the combined company?

Adobe’s mission remains the same — to help people and businesses communicate better. With the acquisition of Macromedia, Adobe strengthens its mission through the combination of leading-edge development, authoring and collaboration tools — and the complementary functionality of PDF and Flash.

Where by “complementary” we mean “the two leading technologies that irritate people when they’re used in lieu of regular web pages.” Note that we’re using PDF to serve this very FAQ — in our synergistic future, perhaps we’ll serve our FAQs in a hybrid PDF/Flash format. One can dream.


What do you see as the opportunities for the combined company going forward? Did something change in how Macromedia perceives its standalone business opportunity?

Macromedia sees this as an opportunity to accelerate and expand its business models. Working as one team, Adobe and Macromedia see the opportunity for greater focus on delivering a compelling and industry-defining technology platform to meet a broader range of customer needs.

Macromedia’s board sees this as an opportunity to cash out.


How many employees does Macromedia have?

Macromedia has approximately 1,450 employees worldwide.

Please note use of present tense.


How many employees does Adobe have?

Adobe has approximately 4,000 employees worldwide.

Ditto regarding use of present tense. Please also note that PDF is an excellent format for sending out résumés.


Who proposed this acquisition — Adobe or Macromedia?

With the recent success and strong momentum of both Macromedia and Adobe, the CEOs of each company agreed that this was an excellent time to combine forces. Together, we have the opportunity to create an industry-defining technology platform that delivers compelling, rich content across a wide range of devices and operating systems.

Adobe CEO Bruce Chizen was the pitcher, Macromedia CEO Stephen Elop was the catcher.


How confident are Macromedia and Adobe that this transaction will go through?

Both Adobe and Macromedia expect the transaction to close. The Boards of both companies have approved the deal. Completion of this type of transaction is subject to customary closing conditions, including obtaining regulatory approvals and the approval of Macromedia and Adobe’s stockholders. And while it is customary for a transaction of this magnitude to be evaluated, we do not anticipate any problems with regulatory approvals. That said, there are always risks involved in transactions of this size.

Given that the Bush administration would likely approve a merger of the entire Fortune 25 into a single corporation, we’re quite confident this transaction will go through.


Do you anticipate a reduction in force as a result of this transaction?

When two successful growing companies join together, the result is a combined organization that creates new and exciting opportunities. The combination will lead to powerful new areas of innovation, new products and solutions, and an acceleration of our respective growth agendas. At the same time, there will be some duplication of employee functions between the two companies, and upon the close of the transaction, we anticipate some level of reduction in force. While we anticipate the integration team will identify opportunities for cost savings, the primary motivation for this acquisition is to continue to expand and grow our businesses into new markets.

Yes.


Will all the reductions in employees come from one company or the other, or both companies?

Any potential reductions will be carefully considered and are likely to impact both organizations.

Have we mentioned that PDF is an excellent format for distributing résumés?


What are the benefits of the combined product lines?

Many of our customer segments are complementary and in many cases customers in those segments are using products from both companies. The combined company will be able to offer increased productivity through streamlined workflow and tighter integration. However, until the close of the transaction, the companies will continue to operate their respective businesses as usual.

Once Freehand, Fireworks, and GoLive are killed, customers will have the benefit of not having any competing apps to choose from, and we benefit from not having any competitors.


What happens to the Macromedia brand?

Adobe recognizes the strong equity of the Macromedia brand. That said, it makes great business sense for a company the size of the combined company to align behind a single corporate brand. Over time, Macromedia products will transition to the Adobe brand. Adobe expects to keep and continue investing in key Macromedia product brands.

The Macromedia brand is dead.


Are there areas of duplication in product lines? If so, how will that be addressed?

Adobe and Macromedia are committed to serving the needs of our combined customers. The companies are largely complementary, and thus the amount of competition between us is limited. Post closing, we believe the industry will remain as dynamic and competitive as it is today. Until the close of transaction, the companies will continue to operate business and usual. The combined company will not be able to create a joint product roadmap until after the transaction is closed.

Adobe and Macromedia have been best friends since like fifth grade, dude! That whole software-patents lawsuit a few years ago? We were just joking. We punk’d them.

Sure, there are tiny little areas of duplication. You know, like Freehand-vs.-Illustrator, the longest-running and most competitive rivalry in the design and publishing industry. This will be addressed by, well, unduplicating some of these apps. Competition is overrated — it only benefits customers.


Will any products be eliminated or phased out as a result of this transaction?

Adobe and Macromedia are committed to serving the needs of our combined customers. The companies are largely complementary, and thus the amount of competition between us is limited. Post closing, we believe the industry will remain as dynamic and competitive as it is today. Until the close of transaction, the companies will continue to operate business and usual. The combined company will not be able to create a joint product roadmap until after the transaction is closed.

We know that what you really want to know is which programs are going to get the axe. But we’re not going to tell you — that’s why we’ve repeated this same exact blurb twice. Cough, cough, Freehand.


Why is this good for customers?

This transaction will benefit customers across all segments the two companies serve — creative professionals working with web, print, and video; application developers; business users and enterprises; the mobile ecosystem, hobbyists and consumers. Combining the passion, creativity, and operational excellence of two leading-edge companies, will allow us to better serve customers by accelerating innovations that change the way that people everywhere are experiencing and interacting with information.

This isn’t good for customers at all.


Do you expect to integrate the FlashPlayer and the Adobe Reader?

The complementary functionality of FlashPlayer and Adobe Reader will enable the deployment of a more robust cross-media, rich-client technology platform. The combined company will continue to be committed to the needs of both the FlashPlayer and Adobe Reader users.

You think the current version of Acrobat Reader takes too long to launch, runs too slowly, and uses too much memory? You ain’t seen nothing yet.

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