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I spent today in Detroit attending annual PLM Market and Industry Forum by CIMdata – one of the leaders in PLM research and strategic management consulting. The event was the first in the series of events CIMdata will have across the globe for the next two months.
While I’m still digesting information from the forum, I wanted to share some of my first impressions and data points I captured during the day.
PLM Market Results 2015
The overall PLM market growth was only 2.8% in 2015 and didn’t meet CIMdata original forecast. You can see the numbers and message below. The important things are 1/ dollar strength compared to other currency; 2/ vendors are switching to subscriptions.
.So, what 2015 results mean for coming years in PLM business? New economic environments will keep challenging PLM vendors. According to CIMdata, market for companies shifting to subscriptions will get worse before it gets better. Autodesk and PTC are in the process of business model changes and switching to subscription (painful process). Until now it mostly impacted Autodesk, but starting to impact PTC too. Other PLM vendors are just preparing for the change
Mergers and acquisition are a way of life in PLM
Despite mixed results, PLM companies kept acquired companies for the last (2015) year. CIMdata counted 71 acquisitions. So called “Focused PLM providers” are traditional target for acquisition. The advantages of these companies are clear. These focused providers are innovating in technology, functional needs, business models, market segments and often becoming a target for expansion and acquisition by large vendors.
PLM and Additive Manufacturing
Stan Przybylinski, CIMdata VP of research, introduced an interesting study of intersection between Additive Manufacturing (3D printing) and PLM. One of his points was the fact 3D printing companies are building an alternative PLM environment. Although these tools are not competing with traditional PLM portfolios, they might create a new digital toolsets to manage information online.
To me, this topic was a real “icing on the cake”. CIMdata VP John MacKrell gave an interesting perspective and business opportunity behind profitability management. Profitability is a sensitive topic. It looks like manufacturing companies are starting to pay attention for such important element of decision process.
What is my conclusion? PLM market is going through an interesting time full of challenges and changes. While CIMdata is overal optimistic about market and its potential, the dangers of business model changes and financial turbulence are clear. Focused Application development remains main way to bring new technologies and discover new segments of the market. Large vendors are acquiring these new solutions to expand their portfolio and market share. Just my thoughts..