PDF/A Competence Center Celebrates Premieres with World’s First PDF/A Conference at CeBIT 2007

April 2, 2007 (Berlin) – The PDF/A Competence Center started the year 2007 with two successful debuts. The PDF/A Conference at the beginning of March in Stuttgart with 240 attendees confirmed just how large the interest in long-term archiving and format consistency with PDF/A is. Shortly thereafter, the PDF/A Competence Center presented itself to visitors at the CeBIT 2007 as an internationally recognized point of contact. Four new members was just one of the results achieved. Due to the large demand, the Competence Center has plans to expand its international activities in the near future.

World’s first PDF/A Conference highly successful
Over 200 persons, including participants from major well-known companies in financial, banking, insurance and many other sectors, came to Stuttgart at the beginning of March for the world’s first PDF/A Conference. Attendees learned about different aspects of long-term archiving with PDF/A in the specialized sessions presented by PDF/A experts, with a choice between management and technical tracks being offered. An important part of the program were sessions from Adobe with technical expertise from Adobe USA. An opening introductory session for all attendees and a summary of ECM strategies were presented by the recognized DMS/ECM consultants Bernhard Zoeller and Guido Schmitz. During the main body of the conference, participants could obtain the information they were seeking by visiting sessions from the management and technical tracks as desired. Breaks between sessions provided an opportunity to view actual solutions and products in the accompanying exhibition hall.

A case study by the Württembergischen und Badischen Versicherungs AG (insurance company) and the subsequent podium discussion also aroused active interest. In the end, the successful event could look back on countless positive assessments. Many praised the high ratio of experts and the relevancy of lecture material, successfully resolving the balancing act between too little and too much information. In general, the attendees were taken in by the possibility of exchanging information and ideas with users, experts and exhibitors. General factors including good organization and strict adherence to the schedule were also well acknowledged.

Rainer Juraschka from DBV-Winterthur, for example, evaluated the comprehensible presentation of complex themes and the good overview from the top-class sessions as very positive. Uwe Posdzeich from the ARAG-IT GmbH was more than satisfied with the factual competence of the speakers, the exhibition and the “very good” organization. Martin Grube from the Finanz IT GmbH was especially interested in detailed information about digitally signing, validating, and metadata in PDF/A files, and also praised the speakers for not heavily promoting their own companies during the sessions. Dieter Steinbach from Delvag found the division in separate management and technical tracks positive, even though some participants would have enjoyed attending two concurrent sessions, because they found so many of the topics interesting.

Harald Grumser, Board Member of the PDF/A Competence Center, summarized the event as follows: “With the number of attendees far exceeding expectations and with the very positive feedback we received, the extensive organizational and subject material preparation work was well worthwhile. It appears we managed to bundle together in Stuttgart the German-speaking competence in PDF/A. The high level of popularity that the conference achieved proved once again how current the topic of PDF/A is in businesses and organizations.”

PDF/A Competence Center at the CeBIT 2007
The PDF/A Competence Center’s premiere at the CeBIT, informing both German speaking and international visitors about PDF/A solutions, followed closely on the heels of the PDF/A Conference. Ten member companies presented themselves at the PDF/A Competence Center’s joint booth in Hall 1. Roger Reeves, PDF Tools AG and CeBIT booth manager for the PDF/A Competence Center: “We experienced the same level of interest here at the CeBIT as at the PDF/A Conference In Stuttgart. Many businesses and organizations have not yet resolved their long-term archiving needs and are accordingly interested in the possibilities that PDF/A has to offer.”

The PDF/A Competence Center also managed to recruit four new members at the CeBIT. Optimal Systems joined as the first full-fledged ECM provider, realizing their vision of a uniform standard format for long-term archiving in a complete ECM solution. Docuworks Digital Archiving is the first member from the Netherlands. Shortly before the end of the exhibition, Docutec AG decided to joined and enriched the PDF/A Competence Center with their knowledge in classification. And finally, the well-known signature provider AuthentiDate applied for membership.

The Adobe Happy Hour at the end of each day, sponsored by the PDF/A Competence Center’s member Adobe, provided a popular meeting point for informal discussions and contacts in the DMS area of Hall 1.

About PDF/A
PDF/A is the ISO 19005 standard for long-term archiving in PDF format. It comprises a limited variant of PDF, a standard profile for using PDF in long-term archiving. The standard specifies in detail what type of content is allowed and what is not. This and other specifications are intended to ensure the long-term readability of documents regardless of the application software and operating system in which they were originally produced. Experts predict that the designation of PDF/A as an ISO standard will promote the popularity of the format, and advantages such as full text search capabilities will lead to it replacing TIFF in the near future.

About the PDF/A Competence Center
The PDF/A Competence Center was established as an association in 2006. The objective of the association is to promote the exchange of information and experience in the field of long-term archiving in accordance with ISO 19005 (PDF/A). Among the founding companies are callas software GmbH, Compart Systemhaus GmbH, LuraTech Europe GmbH, PDF Tools AG (CH) and PDFlib GmbH. The membership has more than quadrupled in just a short time. The executive chairman is Thomas Zellmann, a managing partner of LuraTech. Hans Baerfuss, CEO of PDF Tools AG, Switzerland, is the executive vice-chairman.

Editorial Contacts
PDF/A Competence Center
c/o LuraTech Europe GmbH
Thomas Zellmann
Kantstr. 21
10623 Berlin, Germany
Tel: +49 30 39 40 50 – 0
Fax: +49 30 39 40 50 – 99

good news! GmbH
Nicole Koerber
Kolberger Str. 36
23617 Stockelsdorf, Germany
Tel: +49 451 881 99 – 12
Fax: +49 451 881 99 – 29


About PDF/A Competence Center

The first of the PDF Association's Competence Centers.