NLynx to Acquire Decision Data

With the 1999 Spring Common Conference and Expo as its stage, NLynx Systems Inc. (Austin, Texas) announced both its plans to acquire Decision Data and the release of several new additions to the NLynx portfolio of connectivity and emulation products.

NLynx's acquisition of Decision Data, a division of Intelligent Information Systems Ltd. (IIS), is expected to unite global supplier of connectivity solutions and peripherals for AS/400 (NLynx) with a leading independent supplier of terminals, printers and other peripherals, storage and connectivity products for AS/400 (Decision Data).

"Part of our core strategy is to grow via acquisition as well as internal new product growth," says Fred Klingensmith, chairman of the board of NLynx Systems. "Decision Data had a bit better presence in the U.S. market than we did. We have a much better presence internationally."

While there is some overlap between the two companies in certain products they produce, there is also a good deal of complementary technology, according to Klingensmith. "The combination of the two companies obviously makes us a much more substantial presence particularly in the IBM AS/400 market, which is the point of our business," he says.

The sale of Decision Data (Horsham, Pa.) reportedly fits in with IIS's restructuring plans to allow the company to "sharpen its focus and concentrate on new business opportunities in the storage marketplace, based on some unique technologies we developed over the past few years," says Eli Shapira, president of IIS Ltd. "NLynx has an experienced management team and a deep commitment to the IBM midrange marketplace, which will be a great asset to Decision Data resellers and users worldwide."

NLynx and Decision Data will be "fairly tightly coupled," according to Klingensmith. "We're going to end up with a single distribution system in the U.S. and a single system in Europe."

NLynx plans to maintain Decision Data's facilities in Pennsylvania, although the company has yet to decide whether re-branding of Decision Data solutions will occur under the NLynx name. "The Decision Data name is reputable in the AS/400 market," Klingensmith says. "It's much more recognizable than NLynx in the U.S. market. We will in all likelihood keep the Decision Data name for the long term."

Also announced at Common, NLynx will release SuperStar/Express, an IBM Express Mode compatible UTP hub/multiplexer for Twinax devices. The SuperStar/Express, an intelligent 5250 star repeater and multiplexer, is designed to automatically detect either 1 Mbps or 2 Mbps, and switch to the appropriate mode transparently.

The SuperStar/Express is available in both fiber ($995) and copper ($545) models, allowing users to multiplex up to 56 devices over a single fiber or copper connection. The fiber-optic multiplexing option is designed to enable users to extend applications up to 6,600 feet.

"We developed SuperStar Express so our customers could substantially increase their speed and performance while protecting their investment," says Scott Haram, product manager at NLynx. "Most people know that they will be upgrading their systems in the future, and they want to avoid purchasing equipment that could become obsolescent."

A second NLynx product announced at Common is the Emerald Series ES/TCP 5.0 terminal emulation software, designed to provide AS/400 connectivity and 5250 terminal and printer emulation over Token-Ring or Ethernet for all Windows operating systems.

Through June 30 of this year, those purchasing 25 or more ES/TCP 5.0 user licenses are eligible to receive NLynx's ETU 400 File Transfer at no additional cost.

With a footprint of 5 MB, persistent LU naming when logging on to the network, secure 128-bit encryption technology, simplified printing setup and file transfer support from drag-and-drop IFS to industry-standard ODBC, "it's the best solution on the market today for Windows-to-AS/400 connectivity," Haram says.