Early Thursday morning Siemens announced plans to expand their product lifecycle management solution suite through the acquisition of LMS International NV. Read the complete announcement here. With the purchase of LMS, a leading provider of test and mechatronics simulation software to advanced manufacturing industries, Siemens aims to “close the loop” by extending their systems driven product development support through integrated test management.
Siemens held an industry analyst/trade media webcast to further explain the deal. Judging from the comments and questions that followed the presentation, there is widespread support for vision to intelligently integrate all aspect of the product development process; as there should be.
If you follow this blog or our research, no doubt you are aware this is a topic VDC Research has been tracking intently. (Please see some related posts here and here.) We have been hearing widespread interest from both tool suppliers andOEMs for enhanced integration and collaboration between different engineering disciplines. The complexity of today’s projects is increasing the dependence of each engineering discipline on the functionality of the other disciplines. The lines between software, electrical, and mechanical engineering have started to blur, necessitating a higher frequency of communication and coordination between these once separate groups.
For vendors who have developed platforms supporting most, if not all, of the development lifecycle in the field they have supported in the past, developing a cross-domain approach is the logical next step. Leading vendors such as IBM and others have increased their cross-domain development support through partnerships and organic expansion of their solution suite. Other top vendors have begun to broaden their solutions around cross domain integration through M&A activity, as witnessed by Siemens’ planned acquisition of LMS, PTC’s purchase of MKS, and the ANSYS acquisition of Esterel. VDC continues to expect even further M&A activities as these and other vendors look to fill in gaps in their offerings to better address cross-domain integration.
For further investigation and discussion about the cross-domain integration trend and other important shifts in systems lifecycle management, please see our 2012 Software & Systems Lifecycle Management Tools Market Intelligence Service. This year’s final installment of the intelligence service, an industry brief directly addressing PLM/ALM integration, will be available later this month.