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Adobe Completes Macromedia Acquisition

When Adobe announced its plans to acquire Macromedia prior to NAB 2005, speculation immediately began regarding which tools from Macromedia and Adobe would survive and which would see end-of-life announcements. After Adobe announced completion of the Macromedia acquisition on December 3, the combined company wasted little time answering the question. The initial results are a bit surprising.

Adobe’s press release, noting the completion of the acquisition and the share conversion of 1.38 Adobe shares to 1 Macromedia share, stated that the "company will begin executing the planned integration of the two companies' operations, networks and customer care organizations to ensure a smooth transition and immediate value for customers . . ."

That "immediate value" took the form of three bundles: a Design Bundle, which includes Adobe Creative Suite 2 (CS2) and Macromedia Flash Professional 8; a Video Bundle, which will be released in 2006 and is expected to combine Adobe Premiere and Macromedia Flash Professional 8; and a Web Bundle. Adobe’s Web Bundle is the most ambitious of the three bundles, combining the full Adobe Creative Suite 2 (CS2) Premium suite of products with the full Macromedia Studio 8 suite. Adobe’s online store price for the Design Bundle is $1,599 for the full retail version and $949 for an upgrade version; the Web Bundle sells for $1,899 (full) and $899.00 (upgrade).

Interestingly, Adobe is not yet choosing between its own products and those it acquired in the Macromedia deal. Since the Web Bundle contains both CS2 and Studio 8, it contains two Web development programs–Adobe’s GoLive CS2 and Dreamweaver 8–as well as two photo manipulation programs, Photoshop CS2 and Fireworks 8. This means the pricing of the combined Web Bundle is approximately $300 less expensive than purchasing the Creative Suite Premium 2 and Studio 8 separately. But some customers--those who only need the Web design or photo manipulation software, for instance--may consider that less of a bargain than Adobe anticipates, given that the standalone versions of GoLive CS2, Dreamweaver 8, Photoshop CS2, and Fireworks range in price from $300 to $650.

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