Dassault Systèmes’ Al Bunshaft, Managing Director of DS America, today held the first of a series of update calls for industry analysts. The call reiterated DS’ focus on growing its brands and tweaking its sales channels to reach an ever-greater addressable market and hinted at coming changes.

Mr. Bunshaft comes to DS from IBM PLM and gave a sales-oriented presentation. He said that the integration of IBM PLM into DS went even more smoothly than anticipated because the companies had worked together for so long, the teams knew one another well, and business processes were already aligned. But he sees a need to adapt the company’s go-to-market strategy for its new offerings and target markets. DS currently sells its PLM portfolio via its direct Business Transformation channel and indirectly via the Value Selling channel and sells SolidWorks via the Professional channel. Mr. Bunshaft sees these channels starting to merge and intersect, for example as SolidWorks exploits Enovia, 3DVIA and other brands and as a model based on customer size has less relevance. In its first decade, for example, with CATIA V3, DS saw its addressable market as $3 billion, mostly in large manufacturing accounts. Today, with V6 and all of the other DS brands, the addressable market is estimated at $32 billion and reaches many new industries and customer types. This requires new ways of reaching out to and interacting with customers. As one example, Mr. Bunshaft said that the Value Channel in North America will be expanding to sell more products and into new industries to start nibbling away at that $32 billion opportunity.

The brands themselves continue to be distinct. CATIA will, as Mr. Bunshaft said, “push the envelope of high-end 3D design” while SolidWorks still focuses on “understanding the mainstream market and focusing on ease of use”.

With surprising candor, Mr. Bunshaft said that ENOVIA V6 is finally what ENOVIA was meant to be all along: the hub of a collaboration platform. Prior versions of ENOVIA were really only CATIA repositories, a shortcoming that, according to Mr. Bunshaft, led many customers to “implement best-of-breed solutions [to meet other PLM needs]. V6 solves many integration issues and simplifies the whole process, which will lead many customers to migrate to V6.”

Indeed, V6 is key to bringing DS to new customers, in both new industries and in new regions. For 2011, DS plans to grow its ecosystem reach and industry presence, paired with efforts to increase brand awareness among customers and prospects. One such effort is a collaboration with Boston College (at http://www.bcccc.net/index.cfm?pageId=2244 — yes, 4 c) highlighting DS’ good corporate citizenship with its support for education and economic development in Rwanda.

Perhaps the most interesting aspect of the call was not really new news: DS’ 10-year plan includes making 3DVIA, 3DSwYm, and Exalead “universal applications” as part of its focus on providing a “3D lifelike experience” to a much broader addressable market than is possible with CAD or even PLM alone. Today’s call confirmed that DS has a plan to adjust its sales channels, pricing, support and other customer-facing functions to reach more of that $32 billion opportunity.

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