The 360° View: Siemens PLM to Acquire LMS International
Chad Jackson posted on November 08, 2012 | 12988 views

The 360° View: Siemens PLM to Acquire LMS International

My expectation is that Imagine.Lab applications will be standalone offerings, while Virtual.Lab and SamTech applications will likely be rolled into NX. I also expect the test offerings to continue to be standalone offerings.

Storified by Chad Jackson · Thu, Nov 08 2012 10:33:26

The Official Word

Today, Siemens PLM announced their intent to acquire LMS International. Here's the official press release from Siemens PLM.
Siemens to Acquire LMS, Becoming the First PLM Software Company to Provide Closed-Loop, Systems-Driven Product Development Solutions: Siemens PLM SoftwareSiemens to Acquire LMS, Becoming the First PLM Software Company to Provide Closed-Loop, Systems-Driven Product Development Solutions PLAN...
The most notable claim from Siemens PLM in this press release is in the following statement.
"With this acquisition, Siemens will become the first product lifecycle management (PLM) software company to provide a closed-loop systems-driven product development solution extending all the way to integrated test management. The integrated solution will increase simulation accuracy, which improves decision making and enhances customers’ ability to design the product right the first time. The decision making process is underpinned by a deep and accurate virtual analysis linked to the physical world."
Here's a Q&A with Chuck Grindstaff from Chris Kelley of Siemens PLM.
Q&A With Chuck Grindstaff on LMS Acquisition " Siemens PLM Software BlogBy now you've probably heard the news. Either that or the Siemens PLM Blog is your first stop every morning. For the few of you in that l...

Background

So what exactly does LMS do? Well, for reference, here's the link to their site.
LMS International - Leading Partner in Test & Mechatronic SimulationLMS, the leading partner in test and mechatronic simulation in the automotive, aerospace and other advanced manufacturing industries, hel...
But the quick hit is that they offer two major types of solutions.
The first kind of solution that LMS International offers is focused on testing data acquisition. This includes software components, including Text.Lab, Text.Xpress and TexWare, that connect to hardware systems including SCADAS Lab, Mobile, Recorder and Durability Recorder. The software, in short, allows engineers to acquire, store and then analyze test data. These software and hardware combined solutions cover a breadth of applications areas like acoustics, vibrational, structural and other testing environments.
The second kind of solution that LMS offers is focused on virtually simulating the performance of mechatronic products. Imagine.Lab is a 1D simulation environment that allows engineers to virtually model mechatronic products and simulate their performance in a multi-physics and multi-disciplinary manner.  Virtual.Lab is a set of mechanical 3D simulation finite element and multi-body tools. Samtech is a set of simulation tools specifically aimed at rotating machinery.
Still not clear? This youtube from LMS actually provides some good visuals. There's no narration, so it's relatively marketing-speak free.
LMS International - Engineering Innovationthelmstv

Reaction from across the Twittersphere

First, here's some of the initial reactions from across twitter. Note that this section will be updated throughout the day as more analysts, media folks and bloggers comment on the acquisition. There are many more tweets, but these are the ones that actually had something to say.
Wow, good addition. RT @alistardean: #Siemens acquired #LMS International.. That's a rather ridiculously smart move - http://bit.ly/RGYvDCRalf Steck
Siemens buys LMS international: another Belgian technology jewel in foreign hands #datanews - Dutch: http://ow.ly/f7tZsI.T. Works (Patrick)
Congrats to @SiemensPLM on their intent to acquire LMS International. That's a good grab. http://www.plm.automation.siemens.com/en_us/about_us/newsroom/press/press_release.cfm?Component=204841&ComponentTemplate=822 #CAD #PLMChad Jackson
LMS Intl has more Dassault V5 customers than Siemens PLM customers; will make for interesting sales calls. http://bit.ly/RKDJl5Randall S. Newton
Siemens to acquire leading provider of mechatronic simulation: Boost from LMS International will make industry custome…http://lnkd.in/e9eNVaPatrick Fokke
Siemens PLM adquiere LMS International empresa que desarrolla aplicaciones de simulacion Mecatronica 3D3DCadPortal

Reaction from the Blogosphere

Next, here's some of the blog and news coverage of the acquisition. Likewise, there are lots of folks picking up on the press release. However, with these posts, I was looking for some commentary and analysis. Each one has something valuable to contribute.
Live blogging: Siemens conference call on acquiring LMS (updated with Q&A) - WorldCAD AccessWaking up early is a good thing sometimes, like this morning when a 4:32am press release (Pacific time zone) alerted me to a 7am conferen...
GraphicSpeak " Siemens to acquire LMS International for mechatronic simulationThe $781 million purchase will improve the Siemens PLM simulation line and give them a new group of Dassault V5 users as customers. Sieme...
DEVELOP3D blog - Siemens to acquire LMS InternationalThis one is hot off the newswire. Siemens PLM is to acquire LMS International. The Leuven-based outfit, LMS, has been around for a good l...
Siemens PLM + LMS shakes up CAE | Schnitger CorporationBig news! Siemens announced today that it is acquiring LMS International and pairing it with its PLM division. We've got facts, a bit of ...
Here's a few articles in german, which can be translated fairly easily via google translate (http://translate.google.com). Gives an entirely different perspective.
Siemens koopt Belgische technologieparel LMSHet Duitse Siemens legt 680 miljoen euro op tafel voor het Leuvense softwarebedrijf LMS International. Opnieuw gaat zo een Belgische tech...
POSITIEF NIEUWS: Siemens neemt LMS International overEr is wel degelijk ook goed nieuws te melden buiten ontslagen hier en ontslagen daar! Het Duitse conglomeraat Siemens neemt het Leuvense ...
Siemens neemt LMS International overHet Duitse conglomeraat Siemens neemt het Leuvense LMS International over voor ongeveer 700 miljoen euro. LMS, opgericht en geleid door U...

My Commentary and Analysis

So what do I think? Well, this acquisition isn't just one dimensional. There are several facets of it that need to be considered.
The Imagine.Lab product offers something completely new to the Siemens PLM suite. This starts to get them to compete against some of the mathematical systems modeling that other software providers like Mathematica and Wolfram offer today. The advantage Siemens PLM has in this arena is a close connection to the engineers that are already doing this work. This starts to round out their portfolio for more engineering disciplines in the same way that the PTC's acquisition of MKS started rounding out their ability to manage more of the product record, beyond mechanical representations and into software. Purely from this perspective, this is a good move in my opinion.
In contrast to Imagine.Lab, I would expect Virtual.Lab and SamTech would be rolled into NX in some form or fashion. I am sure there are nuanced capabilities provided by those software applications. However, adding that many new products to the portfolio doesn't make a ton of sense.
I also find the test side of this move intriguing as well. PTC's acquisition of MKS offered some test management capabilities that will be integrated into Windchill. The LMS acquisition adds some software applications to acquire and analyze test data. But this is also really interesting because Siemens PLM obviously sits in a larger business unit that provides hardware for automation. The hardware side of LMS actually fits here, far more than it would have fit in any competitor of Siemens PLM. This also compliments their story in terms of hardware-in-the-loop mechatronics simulation.
As I said in my tweet, I think this acquisition makes a ton of sense for Siemens PLM. At a time when many software providers are trying to figure out a way to diversify their way out of providing solutions mainly to engineering, this move makes Siemens PLM's position stronger in the core of their offerings, NX and Teamcenter, both from a design and simulation perspective. Kudos to Siemens PLM for making a smart move.

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