PLM THIS WEEK: Record Quarter for Arena, Tough One for PTC
Felix Nilsson posted on October 30, 2015 |
Simulation market leaders. Altair releases SIMLAB 14.0. Leading shipbuilder chooses Intergraph.

Who Are the Simulation Market Leaders?

A couple of weeks ago we looked closer at the PLM related spending of companies with the help of CIMdata. This week we’re going to focus on one of its quickest growing subsegments.

Computer Aided Engineering (CAE) or Simulation software is constantly growing in importance as the world of product development gets more digitized.

According to analyst CIMdata, the simulation and analysis (S&A) market had the second highest increase of all the PLM related subsectors, with a growth rate of 7.8% in 2014.

The market has a large spread of different actors, from small and medium sized developers, like Swedish Comsol, to large incumbents, like Ansys and Mathworks. In addition to this, many companies have developed their own analysis software.

Despite the relative dominance of the large actors, CIMdata thinks that there are still major opportunities for new solutions and growth in this market sector. They also expect that there will be continued mergers and acquisitions as leading solution providers compete to offer broader solution suites.

This consolidation trend was quite clear in 2014 with a number of high-profile acquisitions in the market.

Here are a few:

  • ANSYS with Reaction Design (for chemistry simulation) and SpaceClaim, a 3D mechanical CAD firm
  • Altair with Electrothermal Analysis and EM Software & Systems
  • Dassault Systèmes with SIMPACK
  • ESI Group with Cam Mechanical Solutions (a CAE provider based in Asia) 

So who are the biggest players in this business? Here are the revenue numbers for 2014, according to CIMDATA:

  1. Ansys with $936 million and a market share of 20.1%
  2. Mathworks with $683 and a market share of 14.7%
  3. Dassault Systèmes with $444 million and a market share of  9.5%
  4. Siemens PLM with $356 million and a market share of 7.7%
  5. Altair with $279 million 6.0%

Almost all the major S&A providers grew in 2014. ANSYS continued its growth during 2014, as did Dassault Systèmes.

The MathWorks returned to growth, after a rare flat year in 2013. Siemens PLM Software moved up in the rankings after their acquisition of LMS, and saw good results in 2014. Altair Engineering continued to expand its overall product suite.

Record Quarter for Arena

Arena Solutions, which offers cloud based PLM solutions, reports a record third quarter for bookings. 

According to the company, a large part of this is related to upsells of the company’s recently released analytics software, Arena Analytics.

The new module that was released in September is a business intelligence solution that enables companies to gain meaningful at-a-glance visual insights into how their product-related business processes are performing, so they can take proactive action, reduce risk and eliminate problems before they arise.

According to a press release, a large part of Arena’s Q3 success was due to its customers’ willingness to invest into this module.

More than one-third of Arena customers expanded their usage during the quarter, and upsells increased 69 percent from Q3 2014 to Q3 2015. The company also reported a net retention rate of 119 percent for the quarter.

Unfortunately, this is about all the information that the company was inclined to share. But what’s interesting is the fact that companies are buying analytics solutions from a PLM provider, another sign that the gap between ERP and PLM providers is shrinking.

Arena also gained a number of clients during the quarter, including online retailer Ebay.

Tough Quarter for PTC Might Have Prompted Restructuring Plans

Jim Heppelmann, president and CEO of PTC.

Jim Heppelmann, president and CEO of PTC.

Things did not look quite as good for PTC, who recently posted the results for the fourth quarter of the fiscal year 2015. 

The company reported a revenue of $312.6 million and a net income of $9 million, a big drop from the same period in the previous year which amounted to $366.7 million and net income of $38.8 million.

The revenue numbers for the whole fiscal year 2015 were $1,255.2 million. Net income was $62.1 million, which also is a quite a bit below last year’s revenue of $1,357.0 million and net income of $160.2 million.

CEO and President Jim Heppelmann was optimistic, however. 

“We delivered solid fourth quarter results including non-GAAP operating margin and non-GAAP EPS above the high-end of guidance, while also achieving a subscription bookings mix of 20% compared to our guidance of 14%”, said Heppelmann, adding that the company’s IoT segment had strong momentum, and that the SLM business performed strongly in the second quarter.

Perhaps as a result of this, PTC has announced a “Workforce Realignment” program, which will “repurpose or eliminate approximately 8% of worldwide positions and to consolidate select facilities.”

These actions are expected to result in a restructuring charge of between $40 million and $50 million.

The company expects these actions to reduce annual operating expenses by approximately $17 million year-over-year, with the full impact achieved at the end of the second fiscal quarter of fiscal 2016.

Altair Releases SIMLAB 14.0

US CAE developer Altair has released version 14.0 of its SimLab suite.

SimLab can generally be described as a process-oriented and feature-based FEM software that is most effective when users need to quickly set up a simulation session to look at the engineering problems in complex assemblies.

The Altair Solution has several good qualities, the foremost of which is the possibility of automating meshing and modeling tasks, thereby eliminating manual faults when the finite element models are created and interpreted.

SimLab is, partly through this, considered more as a vertical platform to capture and automate modeling processes than traditional "off-the-shelf" pre- and post-processing software.

The 14.0 release has been designed with the needs of users in mind. With a new graphic user interface (GUI), it is based on a framework which all HyperWorks software products are moving towards.

"SimLab 14.0 represents a first step in the transition to the new HyperWorks user experience.  We feel the learnability and efficiency have been significantly improved while maintaining very familiar workflows for the experienced users," said James Dagg, Chief Technical Officer at Altair.

Leading Shipbuilder Chooses Intergraph

Fincantieri, one of the world’s largest shipbuilding groups and the world's leading builder of cruise ships, has selected Intergraph’s software Smart Yard to improve the execution of international large-scale cruise, military and merchant shipbuilding projects.

Fincantieri operates in the design and construction of complex ships with high technological content, such as cruise ships, merchant and naval vessels, offshore and mega yachts.

Following a detailed competitive benchmark and proof of concept project, the company chose Smart Yard – Intergraph’s flagship solution for a single, integrated, collaborative design and fabrication knowledge management environment specializing in fabrication yards.

Fincantieri says it will use Smart Yard in its upcoming shipbuilding projects for cruise, merchant and naval vessels.

Intergraph Smart Yard is a vertical solution for shipbuilders which covers everything from the design phase to fabrication and construction through final handover.

Users can manage collaboration with materials availability, Bill of Materials (BOM) management, scheduling and simulation of the actual module assembly construction process.

About the Author

Felix Nilsson is PLM editor at VerkstadsForum, who works with both printed and online media. He also works as a reporter for PLM TV News.

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