PLM Keeping up Momentum: Siemens PLM Analyst Conference 2011


I had the opportunity to talk with the team at Siemens PLM at their recent analyst conference in Boston. Every time I attend one of these events, I come back and ask myself “what can I share with people that will help them understand all that I learned in two days of presentations, demonstrations, interviews, and side conversations?” There is so much to share and so much detail it is hard to know where to start and there is not enough time to share it all. So I am going to share my key takeaways from the event in regards to the PLM Market, Cool Things Manufacturers are Doing with PLM, and My Take on how Siemens PLM is doing in furthering the PLM vision and roadmap. Fair enough? I hope so.

Note: Part 2 Cool Customer Tricks – Presenting Business Value from PLM at Siemens Conference is up now

The PLM Market

In short, the PLM market is alive and well. PLM, and Siemens PLM in particular, has made it through the economic downturn and is enjoying recovering spend. Interestingly, even with the current uneasiness in the market, PLM license revenues continue to grow. As Siemens reported at the conference, Siemens PLM has:

  • Had 6 quarters of steady growth
  • Enjoyed double-digit license growth
  • Exceeded all of their profitability and cash flow targets

Other recent news from Siemens’ competitors also point towards a strong recovery for PLM software. Siemens PLM also gave some strong competitive updates including significant wins in automotive and claim to be having great success against the competition (although I am sure we will hear dissenting opinions from said competitors shortly).

Another important takeaway from the conference (and an indicator of PLM market health in my mind) is continued industry specialization. As I have been saying for years, including my soapbox on PLM is an Industry Affair, or Is It? going back to 2003 and revisited in 2010 with Mythbusting PLM is an Industry Affair – different industries need different things from PLM. But, and this is important, they also have common needs that transcend industry. I have seen PLM follow ERP in verticalizing offerings as it matures. At this point, Siemens PLM has re-aligned their organization to put greater industry-specific emphasis on their business. I think this is an important change, and was impressed at the well thought-out strategy that provides industry-focused solutions while still maintaining commonality across the industry offerings. This is an important balancing act so industry solutions can still leverage all of the core enhancements being added to the products. Well done.

At this point, I realize that this is going to be a long post even though I am summarizing. I think it’s time to take a break. Look for more on Cool Things Manufacturers are Doing with PLM and My Take on Siemens PLM’s Progress shortly.

Implications for Manufacturers

A healthy PLM market and Siemens PLM business is a good sign for manufacturers. This will ensure that Siemens will continue to invest in their PLM products to maintain growth. Interestingly, Siemens PLM President Chuck Grindstaff pointed out during the conference that Siemens does not believe in cutting R&D in a downturn anyway to ensure innovation, which is welcome news for customers I am sure.

So that’s what I hear from Siemens PLM, I hope you found it useful. What do you think?