PLM cloud options and 2014 SaaS survey

PLM cloud options and 2014 SaaS survey


The number of SaaS businesses is growing these days. You probably had a chance to read my CAD, PLM and Top 500 cloud app vendors list few months ago. However, one size doesn’t fit all. This is certainly true about engineering software and PLM. As PLM companies are moving to the cloud, we want to learn more about possible options and strategies of how do we move to the cloud. Below you can find a list of my previous articles covering the diversity of cloud strategies from major CAD/PLM vendors – Autodesk, Dassault, PTC and Siemens PLM.

PLM vendors, large manufacturers and public cloud

Dassault is going to support all PLM cloud options by 2015+

Siemens PLM Analyst Event and PLM Public Cloud Strategies

The challenging face of dual PLM clouds

PLM Cloud Switch and PTC Final Click?

In my view, CAD and PLM companies are in a very active stage looking how to build cloud technologies and products. We can make an initial comparison of cloud PLM strategies of several CAD/PLM companies. Autodesk and Arena are fully embraced cloud as a primary way to deliver PLM solutions to customers. Siemens PLM and PTC are following IaaS strategies. Dassault Systems strategy is to support all cloud options by 2015. Aras plan to leverage cloud from both technology and business strategy.

PLM companies are joining growing population of SaaS businesses. It means we can start gathering some statistics about these companies, their performance and technical aspects of cloud delivery. If you considering to build your future PLM strategies around cloud, this is can be very valuable data point for your research.

My attention caught by 2014 SaaS Survey published by for Entrepreneurs blog by David Skok (@BostonVC). If you are in SaaS business, it is must read article. The following two charts caught my special attention. It gives you a perspective on how cloud (SaaS) applications will be delivered:


Another one shows how delivery method changes as SaaS business is growing.


Today, cloud PLM is only part of the business for all major CAD/PLM companies. It is hard to statistic from the research above to these businesses. However, it clearly gives you some perspective on business performance and aspects of how cloud PLM business will be developed in the next few years.

What is my conclusion? Cloud is here. There is no escape path. Manufacturing companies should look how to optimize their IT infrastructure and application delivery methods. I’m pretty sure, cloud PLM will become part of this optimization. It is probably a good idea to make yourself familiar with the aspects of performance of  SaaS companies to create a foundation for future strategy meetings. A note for PLM IT managers and PLM architects. Just my thoughts…

Best, Oleg


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  • Oleg. I’ve been thinking about this and you need work your way down the alphabet to M, for Microsoft. I see a lot of A’s, G and I but not much M or anything beyond. OK maybe the occasional S for good measure. But let’s give you a new one for M and yes, one or two more for A – an A for Azure and an A for Aras. As of today, Aras Innovator is available in Azure as a preconfigured virtual machine ready to go with sample data. It takes just a few clicks and minutes later you have a running instance of Aras Innovator ready to go. I am fairly sure this is the fastest, and easiest way to get PLM in the cloud. I just added it to my Azure account and I’m now navigating my way through the sample product BOM via IE. I’m not even an IT guy but I managed this easily. Perhaps the future of PLM is not just about availability in the cloud, but about speed and agility as well?

  • beyondplm

    Hi Simon, thanks for your comment and sharing this information. What is the cost of getting Aras in Azure Box? How does it go with Aras Enterprise Open source model?
    I’d live to make a try and share my thoughts.

    Btw. I think, you missed this big “M” and “A”… just few days ago.

    PLM and Microsoft Azure Cloud In A Box.

    Best, Oleg

  • Tim T.

    Good read! Glad to have found this article.
    In my opinion Cloud will gain more and more importance; especially for small and some middle sized companies. I also wrote an article about in on my blog. (unfortunateley in german)

    Best regards and greetings from Germany

  • beyondplm

    Tim, thanks for sharing the link! and thanks for support from Germany! Google translate can help me to read. I agree – cloud tech is on the raise and it can bring lots of advantages to ERP and other enterprise domains.Best, Oleg

  • The cost depends on how much capacity you need. You can specify Aras Innovator in a number of instance sizes ranging from a modest A4 (8 cores, 14GB) to say HPC size A9 (16 cores, 112GB). You can probably go smaller to say an A5 (2 cores, 14GB) and use your MSDN subscription to try it essentially for free.
    There’s no difference between running Aras on-premise or in the cloud when it comes to their open source model. You have access to their community, etc and can develop your own Apps, etc for Innovator in exactly the same way.
    The story behind the story is Aras licensing model. Its … shall we say .. modern. It makes this type of cloud service possible.
    And I try not to miss any of your posts (though there are many, Oleg) and yes I saw the post on PLM & MS Azure, for which – many thanks.

  • beyondplm

    Hi Simon, you are very welcome! Thanks for your explanation about cloud and licensing.

    I’m trying to keep myself balanced and run over all alphabet (from A to Z), but there are so many letters :). Certainly I’m paying attention on what Microsoft does. Just for fun, I run google search for “microsoft” and it resulted in 578 results. Not a bad number.

    Getting back to you answer about Aras cloud instance. Shame on me, but I don’t have MSDN subscription. How does MSDN license work these days? Is it still pay only or you have some “freemium strategy”?

    Best, Oleg

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