Schnitger Corporation

Quickies: Pricing Fusion 360, CENIT reports, COFES

bostonIt’s been tough to concentrate this week, so we’ve finally wised up and are sticking to classical music and not news radio. Did you know that there is a big world outside Boston? And that much of it waltzes, minuettes and tangos?

Time to get busy.

We’re starting to get a sense of pricing for next-generation CAD offerings. Randall Newton of GraphicSpeak reports that Autodesk CEO Carl Bass told attendees at the Develop 3D Live event in the UK that

access to Fusion 360 will start at $25 per month for the basic service. Complementary modules, with specific functionality yet to be determined, will also cost $25 per month, but no user will be charged more than $200 per month to use the complete suite of tools to ship under the Fusion 360 brand name. Fusion 360 is still in beta; Autodesk expects to release it as a commercial product later this year.

Fusion 360 is Autodesk’s browser-based (but with a local download) CAD modeling tool. A subscription to AutoCAD Inventor LT Suite costs $1720 (in the US on 17 April, from the Autodesk online store. YMMV.) so on the face of it, a Fusion 360 seat is slightly less expensive. Of course, it’s not fair to compare an “old generation” product like Inventor LT to the completely re-imagined Fusion 360, but customers will undoubtedly start there and so should we. The team behind Fusion 360 is trying to rethink how people do design, minimizing clicking/pointing and improving the usability and efficiency of the design process.

Lots of questions remain, such as how pricing will scale as functionality grows, whether there is a minimum subscription period, how this fits into a reseller-based sales process (probably no different from any other online store purchase, though we don’t know that for sure) — but Autodesk has put a stake in the ground. Let’s see how customers and competitors respond.

Speaking of channel, CENIT Systemhaus announced results earlier this week for 2012. Total revenue was €119 millon, up 10% as reported, led by a 19% increase in revenue from the sales of third party software to €49 million. Sales of CENIT’s proprietary software were up 5% to €12 million. CENIT singled out as especially successful its own FASTSUITE (manufacturing solutions that are complimentary to CATIA and DELMIA) and cenitCONNECT (process and workflow management within SAP PLM) and IBM FileNet System Monitor and ECLISO in EIM.

For 2013, CENIT sees a “neutral” outlook in Germany and a “negative” outlook in the Euro-zone, where CENIT conducts over 90% of its business. Accordingly, CENIT forecasts 3% revenue growth in 2013 and “higher growth rates” thereafter.

Finally, last week’s COFES sounds like it was, again, a terrific event. I think this week’s D3D Live action is holding up blog posts about COFES, but Oleg Shilovitsky posted his take on the event here.

Image courtesy Gala Darling, http://galadarling.com/

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