UGS Targets Mid-market with New PLM Offering

Looks to expand product lifecycle management options for midsize manufacturers

Looks to expand product lifecycle management options for midsize manufacturers

Cincinnati — October 5, 2005 — Product lifecycle management (PLM) solution provider UGS Corp. has debuted a new strategy to deliver enterprise-level PLM technology to the mid-market with solutions that were designed to not require extensive IT support, often a key prerequisite for midsize firms.

UGS made the announcement at the 2005 Solid Edge User Summit and Executive Symposium. Solid Edge digital product development software is part of the company's new mid-market portfolio.

The PLM provider said its mid-market strategy is supported by a new product portfolio, the UGS Velocity Series portfolio, which marks the first offering to combine mid-market solutions for digital product development with the technology of UGS' Teamcenter product line. The UGS Velocity Series will be distributed and supported through a new channel program.

The new Global Channel Program focuses on deploying enterprise-level PLM to midsize manufacturers. UGS intends to leverage this new program to grow its existing channel partners and ultimately expand channel capacity by 50 percent by the end of 2006.

Tony Affuso, chairman, CEO and president of UGS, said that while his company already has a significant presence in the mid-market with its large installed base of NX and Solid Edge digital product development software, this new strategy would help expand UGS' foothold in this space with a solution that was designed for faster deployment, efficient distribution and low total cost of ownership.

"Midsize manufacturers can now leverage enterprise-level PLM benefits to transform their process of innovation and effectively compete with larger companies who often command superior resources," Affuso said.

Mid-Market Business Drivers

UGS said it has found that, similar to large organizations, midsize manufacturers face issues of global sourcing, product customization, accurate and timely quotations, program management, integrated design and manufacturing and increased regulatory requirements. While these companies have previously focused on standalone design, manufacturing and data management solutions, UGS believes that today they need one integrated PLM product portfolio.

In addition, UGS said it has found that midsize manufacturers face an explosion of 3D data but have limited resources to deal with the issues related to this data. For example, most companies have small IT staffs, little or no documented processes, and limited training resources. Typically these midsize manufacturers have been left to face these issues with isolated products from multiple vendors and no scalability. UGS believes that its new offering will provide mid-market firms with a solution to this conundrum.

Market Outlook

According to AMR Research, the mid-market is the fasting growing segment in PLM, growing at 12 percent annually. In addition, AMR estimates spending on non-CAD PLM, such as collaborative product data management (cPDM), will drive a substantial portion of that increased investment.

"Our outlook for technology investment among midsized manufacturers is healthy over the next three to five years, with several segments growing at double digit rates," said David O'Brien, vice president at AMR Research. "Small and midsize manufacturers continue to struggle to improve innovation. Most face very similar challenges to their larger counterparts. Technology strategy, and investment, in innovation should enable and support sound business strategy, and a culture of continuous innovation. Mid-market manufacturers are looking for technology investments that are easy and fast to implement, and offer a low risk way of accessing robust technology."

Additional Articles of Interest

— For more information on mid-market companies using product lifecycle management solutions to gain competitive advantage, see "Stuck in the Middle" in the April/May 2004 issue of Supply & Demand Chain Executive.

— Is it possible to preemptively address the business risks associated with product quality? One industry executive thinks so. Read more in "The Quality Risk," the Executive Memo column in the August/September 2005 issue of Supply & Demand Chain Executive.

Benchmarking is one way to improve your supply chain's competitive advantage. For easy guidelines that will help overcome any challenges benchmarking may present, read "Standardizing Benchmarking to Achieve Results."