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Canadian Luxury Window Manufacturer Implements PLM Solutions from IBM and Dassault Systèmes

CATIA and SMARTEAM to reduce development cycles while improving configuration and production of custom orders

Steinbach, Manitoba & Paris, France - 01 Dec 2003: IBM and Dassault Systèmes today announced that Loewen Inc., a Manitoba-based leading manufacturer of luxury Douglas fir windows and doors, will implement their Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) solutions. PLM will enable Loewen to reduce design cycle times, increase productivity, and improve departmental linkages by providing a consistent information repository for product knowledge and design constraints.

Loewen chose IBM PLM Solutions, with CATIA V5, the world's leading collaborative virtual product design application and SMARTEAM, for product data and lifecycle management, both developed by Dassault Systèmes, to upgrade their existing 2D system. As a manufacturer of highly configurable products, Loewen must develop systems and processes that give customers the greatest opportunity for customization yet ensure product manufacturability. The PLM solutions will not only provide this flexibility, but will also enable Loewen to meet an aggressive development schedule and permit employees, suppliers and customers collaborate on custom designs.

"As a midsize manufacturer with approximately 1200 employees, we were pleased to receive the type of attention and support from IBM and RAND Worldwide, an IBM and Dassault Systèmes business partner, that is typically offered to a large scale multi-national corporation," said Stephen Segal, Chief Information Officer, Loewen. "For Loewen, PLM is a strategic initiative that will result in incremental top line revenue growth while streamlining and improving ongoing operational practices. The strength of the business partners combined with the scalability and robustness of the CATIA and SMARTEAM solutions were all key attributes in our selection decision."

Loewen's engineering team will use CATIA's knowledgeware functionality to increase design reuse and to ensure adherence to company standards. CATIA's finite element analysis tools will also be used to virtually simulate how weather conditions, such as the high winds of a hurricane, impact glass panes, thus saving prototype costs.

SMARTEAM will be used to manage Loewen's product development process, which includes millions of variations of custom-built doors and windows. Loewen will also use SMARTEAM to submit bid requests to suppliers and contractors, which will enable them to bid on more projects and increase their win ratio. In the next stage of the PLM implementation, Loewen is considering linking its PLM platform to the company's ERP system.

"Dassault Systèmes works very closely with manufacturers in the fabrication and assembly sector such as Loewen to develop solutions that fulfill their very specialized business requirements," said Joel Lemke, general manager PLM Americas, Dassault Systèmes "Reuse of product design data, end-to-end coverage of development processes, and collaborative workspaces for development teams and suppliers - these are just some of the advantages of PLM that will enable Loewen to marry tradition and quality with highly competitive development processes."

Running on IBM IntelliStations and using IBM xSeries eServers, Loewen designers will now have a system that is responsive, scalable and easy to use. Rand, an IBM and Dassault Systèmes Business Partner, will provide on-site support and training.

"Loewen's choice to implement CATIA V5 and SMARTEAM is one more example that small-to-medium sized businesses recognize that IBM PLM solutions developed by Dassault Systèmes are not only affordable, but also that they are key to maintaining competitive advantage," said Frank Baldesarra, President and CEO of RAND Worldwide. "Loewen has positioned itself to increase productivity dramatically and to enhance its entire business process."

Contact(s) information

Leslie Plant
IBM Media Relations
(905) 316-6275
laplant@ca.ibm.com

Derek Lane
Dassault Systèmes Press Contact
(818) 673-2243
derek_lane@ds-us.com

Stephen Segal
Loewen Press Contact
(204) 346-5146
stephensegal@loewen.com

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