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Autodesk Introduces Cloud-based Product Lifecycle Management


New PLM offering unveiled at Autodesk University 2011

LAS VEGAS, Nov. 29 — Autodesk, Inc. today previewed a new solution designed to transform how manufacturers manage the entire lifecycle of a product — from its conception, through design and manufacture, partner and supplier management, procurement, quality, compliance, service and more. Autodesk is tapping into the cloud to deliver a new approach to product lifecycle management (PLM), which enables companies to capture and manage product information and processes to continuously improve the products they manufacture.

Autodesk's new PLM offering, which is expected to be generally available early next year, is part of Autodesk 360 — a set of secure, easy to use and affordable solutions developed to streamline product and project business processes. Autodesk 360 for PLM is for companies of all sizes, from small companies eager to deploy PLM for the first time to large enterprises that have become disenchanted by PLM, due to the complexities and high costs associated with traditional PLM implementations.

"Our approach to PLM is a sharp contrast to the decades old technology in the market today," said Robert "Buzz" Kross, senior vice president, Manufacturing Industry Group at Autodesk. "Autodesk 360 for PLM will enable customers of all sizes to achieve the full promise of PLM with a scalable, configurable and intuitive solution. We believe it will help our customers achieve a measurable competitive advantage through better, more accessible collaboration and business information management."

Building upon the company's leadership with cloud-based solutions, Autodesk 360 for PLM is geared for manufacturers that need to manage business processes throughout the entire lifecycle of a product — from the earliest concept to retirement. Autodesk 360 for PLM will comprise:

  • Autodesk 360 Nexus — Autodesk 360 Nexus is a new, cloud-based solution that will anchor Autodesk 360 for PLM with affordable, easy-to-use and simple-to-deploy software as a service that helps make the benefits of PLM business applications available to users anytime, anywhere — with less cost and risk.
  • Autodesk Vault — Currently available, Autodesk Vault provides on-premise product data management software that enables engineering workgroups to organize, manage and track their entire designs, engineering bills-of-materials and change processes. Autodesk Vault will work seamlessly with the Autodesk 360 Nexus.
  • Autodesk Buzzsaw ― Enabled by Autodesk Cloud, Buzzsaw's cloud-based supplier collaboration allows customers to securely exchange designs and documents with external partners and distributed teams, regardless of their location. Autodesk Buzzsaw Mobile ensures that users have the most up to date information, wherever it's needed.

Global research firm IDC* estimates the PLM software applications market will grow to $20.5 billion by 2015. The processes required to commercialize and maintain products are increasingly complex and dispersed. Frequent interactions result in an overload of design, process, and business information that decision-makers and distributed teams must sort, prioritize, and manage over the lifecycle of their products.

Unlike the expensive, complicated, engineering-centric, and difficult-to-deploy PLM systems available today, Autodesk 360 Nexus is more readily and easily configurable to meet customer-specific product lifecycle process needs across the enterprise. Employees in a range of roles from planning to product development to supplier management, quality and compliance, service and more will have greater ability to eliminate bottlenecks and access product and project-related information more quickly regardless of their location.

Until recently, PLM has been the near-exclusive domain of large businesses, mainly due to the high cost and expertise related to deploying and maintaining the systems. "No company should be excluded from the benefits of PLM technology," commented Kross.

An IDC Manufacturing Insights report released in June 2011** revealed that manufacturers identified the top three business benefits of cloud systems as: reducing total hardware spend; improving IT staff productivity and end user service levels; and reducing total spend on software licensing and maintenance. Autodesk 360 Nexus will better enable customers to start small but scale fast to meet demand, and fit easily within their existing business environment.

About Autodesk 360 solutions

Enabled by Autodesk Cloud, Autodesk 360 solutions provide a powerful and complete digital view of information and processes, combined with the ability to securely manage data, so that the right information is accessible wherever and whenever it is needed. Easily accessible to both technical and non-technical professionals within or outside the enterprise, Autodesk 360 presents an intuitive way to view business information, collaborate, manage and share data, and plan throughout product lifecycles, while integrating with existing systems and software. The low up-front and ongoing costs of cloud-based solutions present a more affordable path by eliminating largely unnecessary capital expenditures and deployment costs. Autodesk 360 solutions also provide customers with built-in security features and regular back-ups. For more information about Autodesk 360 solutions, see today's related announcement ("Autodesk Takes BIM to the Cloud at Autodesk University").

About Autodesk University

Now in its 19th year, Autodesk University is the annual series of Autodesk in-person and virtual user conferences, which include the flagship Autodesk University event in Las Vegas, Autodesk University China, Autodesk University Japan and Autodesk University Brazil, as well as associated online content available through Autodesk University Virtual. The 2011 events will bring together 200,000 designers, engineers, architects and digital artists together to explore the "Power of the Possible". More information is available at the Autodesk University website.

About Autodesk

Autodesk, Inc. (NASDAQ: ADSK) is a leader in 3D design, engineering and entertainment software. Customers across the manufacturing, architecture, building, construction, and media and entertainment industries — including the last 16 Academy Award winners for Best Visual Effects — use Autodesk software to design, visualize and simulate their ideas. Since its introduction of AutoCAD software in 1982, Autodesk continues to develop the broadest portfolio of state-of-the-art software for global markets. For additional information about Autodesk, visit www.autodesk.com.

*IDC, Technology Selection: Worldwide Product Life-Cycle Management (PLM) Applications 2011–2015 Forecast, Doc # MI230854, October 2011

**IDC, Business Strategy: Cloud Computing in Manufacturing, Doc # MI228939, June 2011

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Source: Autodesk, Inc.

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