Canon is hunting for ISVs following the official launch of its new development platform.
The multifunctional embedded application platform (MEAP) will allow the vendor to add third-party applications around areas such as auditing and secure printing to its range of multifunction devices (MFDs).
So far the vendor has signed local developer, Bear Solutions, to produce a cost disbursement application for education and corporate verticals. National marketing manager of Canon's Business Imaging Solutions Group, David Gradwell, said emerging customer needs necessitated the launch of a new technology platform.
"It's not enough for Canon just to supply printing - we have to meet customer needs around workflow, document handling, storage and retrieval too," he said.
As such, the vendor would look to sign up to 15 new partners to produce applications around these business issues, Gradwell said. "ISV partners will also act as roads to market for us as they already have existing channels for their solutions," he said. "Their development of applications outside of the current MFD feature sets will also open up the market for current sales partners."
Canon would use the prospect of international expansion as a lure to ISVs to its stables, Gradwell said.
"Just as our eCopy application - which was developed in the US - will be available here, we see locally developed applications being made available over there," he said.
With the vendor developing the market for some 18 months in preparation for its MEAP launch, the size of the company's install base was also an added incentive, Gradwell said.
"To date there are about 5000 MEAP-enabled MFDs in the Australian market place," he said. "So there is a ready and growing install base for our new ISV partners and by the end of the year they will also have access to colour MEAPs."