IBM's Enhanced PLM Express Portfolio Offers Medium-Sized Businesses Improved Productivity and Quicker Time-to-Market at a Lower Price


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PARIS - 11 May 2005: IBM today announced that it has enhanced its portfolio of Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) Express offerings created specifically for medium-sized customers. Mid-sized businesses face the same challenges as larger enterprises -- including improved productivity, faster time-to-market and better customer service -- but have unique requirements given the size of their IT staffs and budgets. "PLM Express for Industrial Products and Consumer Goods" and "PLM Express for Electronics" have been improved to now deliver even more functionality to mid-sized manufacturing companies to help them start their On Demand journeys at an even lower price.

These offerings are part of IBM's expanded Express Portfolio announced today. The IBM Express Portfolio now counts 100 offerings designed, developed and priced for the mid-market, including new Express services offerings, a retail solution, a Business Partner program called "Built on IBM Express Portfolio," new Express servers and high-powered IntelliStation workstations.

A New Integrated Suite Based on Collaborative Generative Design
At the core of the PLM express offering is a new integrated suite of PLM software, called Collaborative Generative Design, based on CATIA V5 design and knowledgeware applications to capitalize on previous projects and proven designs; SMARTEAM software for collaboration and secure access to product data; as well as STEP for data exchange of CAD drawings in other formats. CATIA V5 and SMARTEAM are both IBM PLM solutions developed by Dassault Systèmes. Building on the Collaborative Generative Design platform, optional "Profile Packs" also can be added to tailor each engineering seat to the specific role that the engineer serves on the project team. Thus, companies of any size can start small but add function as their needs and skills evolve. With the introduction of IBM Financing Advantage, the total solution, including implementation services, can be financed more easily than ever before.

IBM PLM Express for Industrial Products and Consumer Goods Manufacturers
According to industry analyst AMR Research, nearly three quarters of small and medium-sized manufacturers are considering investing in PLM, which can provide the cost savings and top-line revenue improvements that industrial products and consumer goods manufacturers need to remain competitive in a dynamic market. This new affordable PLM Express package enables small and medium-sized businesses to become on demand and exceed their customers' expectations by offering them the right product, at the right time, at the right price.

It provides advanced PLM capabilities based on best practices for "Collaborative Generative Design." This method enables manufacturers to capitalize on knowledge from previous projects to standardize parts, using the most common ones, and to reduce the amount of time spent on repetitive tasks, freeing up their time to focus on adding innovation and competitive advantage to new product designs. Thus companies can lower their cost of new product development and reduce long cycle times for custom projects. They can respond to requests for proposals (RFPs) and requests for quotes (RFQs) more quickly and profitably and thus win more business and grow revenue. They can also enforce compliance to industry and company standards.

IBM PLM Express for Electronics Manufacturers
PLM continues to be the most successful business strategy to help mid-sized electronics manufacturers keep pace with changing customer preferences and adjust to market forces by becoming on demand. This new affordable PLM Express package enables them to anticipate the changing pace of innovation and offer their customers the right product at the right time while enforcing compliance to industry and company standards.

By easing the integration of conceptual industrial design with detailed mechanical design, companies can remove the barriers between departments and engineering disciplines and reduce the delay between teams, thus facilitating more concurrent engineering and reducing the overall product development time. The integration of mechanical, electrical and software systems within the bill of materials (BOM), and the integration of analysis and machining with design for total digital product visualization, streamlines and speeds product development. Moreover, to help electronics companies drive innovation and differentiate their products from the competition, IBM PLM Express for Electronics Manufacturers also delivers new product differentiators like advanced styling and improved customer service.

"Meyn provides its customers with complex processing systems in a competitive market that sees short lead times in combination with an exceptional product variety," said Steef Klein, CIO of Meyn Food Processing Technology B.V, a leading global supplier of poultry processing systems, equipment and services, based in Oostzaan, the Netherlands. "Tightly managing both the development and the realization process in terms of speed, costs and accuracy provides additional competitive advantages. We are happy that IBM, Dassault Systèmes, and their Business Partner MSC Software, were able to match our ambitions in this respect."

"PLM Express now allows us to add advanced functionality like full visualization, kinematics simulation and advanced surface design at a price that meets our budget. We can now create marketing literature to promote new products even before the first prototype is manufactured, helping us to bring new cycling technology to market faster," says Forrest Yelverton, Director of Engineering at Pacific Cycle, a leading manufacturer of high-performance bicycles, based in Madison, WI, United States.

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