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Xerox-ACS: When do you pull a trigger on a game changing acquisition?

Xerox CEO Ursula Burns took over the reins July 1 from Anne Mulcahy and in less than three months made a bet that will define her tenure. Talk about moxie.

Xerox CEO Ursula Burns took over the reins July 1 from Anne Mulcahy and in less than three months made a bet that will define her tenure.

Talk about moxie.

It remains to be seen if Xerox's $6.4 billion purchase of Affiliated Computer Services, an IT services company that has been to the merger altar before, will pay off.

On paper, the Xerox deal makes sense. Xerox wants to transform, argues that document management and business processes are merging and wants recurring revenue that can ride out business cycles. Who can argue with that?

But like most deals, the details will matter. Burns (right) has to keep ACS workers in the fold, meld cultures and cross-sell multiple product lines.

To see how Xerox is remaking itself, check out this graphic:

In one swoop, Xerox diversifies its business and expands internationally. It's a big move---if it works. If it doesn't Burns will be saddled with ACS on her resume. In any case, you have to admire the willingness to make a big move.

This post was originally published on Smartplanet.com