Jeff's MCAD Blogging
Jeffrey Rowe has more than 40 years of experience in all aspects of industrial design, mechanical engineering, and manufacturing. On the publishing side, he has written well over 1,000 articles for CAD, CAM, CAE, and other technical publications, as well as consulting in many capacities in the … More »
MCADCafe e-Magazine: Dassault Systèmes Acquiring Gemcom
May 8th, 2012 by Jeff Rowe
Dassault Systèmes announced its intent to acquire geological modeling and simulation company Gemcom Software International (Gemcom) for approximately US$360 million. Privately-held Gemcom is the world leader in mining industry software solutions, headquartered in Vancouver.
“With the acquisition of Gemcom, coupled with our 3D Experience platform capabilities, our objective is to model and simulate our planet, improving predictability, efficiency, safety and sustainability within the Natural Resources industry and beyond,” said Bernard Charlès, President and CEO, Dassault Systèmes. “To support this ambitious goal, we have created a new brand, GEOVIA. Raw material provisioning and long term resource availability is a major concern for society. Today’s announcement is a significant step towards fulfilling our purpose of providing 3D experiences for imagining sustainable innovations to harmonize products, nature and life.”
Today’s mining industry, the primary user of Gemcom’s software, is growing quickly. There are more than 5,500 operating mines worldwide and approximately 15,000 mining projects. The associated mining software market is experiencing strong growth, with third-party analysts estimating a double digit trend for the foreseeable future.
”This acquisition will clearly benefit Gemcom’s customer base, bringing global support and enterprise collaboration. Advanced technologies in 3D modeling and simulation will not only enable engineers and geologists to model and visualize resources but also improve sustainable mine productivity,” said Rick Moignard, President and CEO, Gemcom. “We believe that with Dassault Systèmes’ support we will be able to address global issues for our customers as a real partner. None of our competitors can match that in this industry.” Rick Moignard will become the CEO of the newly created GEOVIA brand, after completion of the Gemcom acquisition.
After the closing of the transaction, Gemcom’s 360 employees and management will remain in place and continue serving the mining industry. By leading the new GEOVIA organization, Gemcom’s management will champion the further development of Dassault Systèmes’ strategy of modeling the natural world. In addition, Gemcom’s current offices will further extend the overall geographic reach of Dassault Systèmes in Australia, Africa, Canada, South America, Kazakhstan, Mongolia, Indonesia, and Russia.
Dassault Systèmes and Gemcom have entered into a definitive acquisition agreement whereby Dassault Systèmes will acquire Gemcom in an all cash transaction. The completion of the acquisition is subject to normal closing conditions, including regulatory approvals. The transaction is expected to be completed in July 2012, and Gemcom to be accretive to Dassault Systèmes non-IFRS earnings and neutral to its non-IFRS operating margin.
Commentary By Jeffrey Rowe, Editor
Now wait a minute . . . a largely design engineering software and PLM company, Dassault Systemes, acquiring a mining software company, Gemcom? Think about for a minute and it starts to make more sense. This is actually a big deal for Dassault with its implications for the future for both companies. Big because it involves sustainability – a philosophy that Dassault is embracing. In fact, it is embracing sustainability so much it has become an integral part of its identity and branding. It’s also big because Dassault is creating a totally new brand for it – GEOVIA, it’s tenth unique brand.
Dassault is positioning GEOVIA for modeling and simulating the earth to improve predictability, efficiency, safety, and sustainability of natural resources. In the mining industry, its software portfolio covers the entire mine lifecycle. GEOVIA helps geologists, surveyors and mine engineers understand, model and manage all aspects of mining. With GEOVIA, Dassault hopes to extend its capabilities to other sectors that process natural resources such as water, vegetation, oil and gas, and many others, as well as sectors for managing landscaping and city planning.
Beyond sustainability, this also hints at Dassault getting into mine lifecycle management (MLM?), as well as architectural design and AEC – a totally new market for Dassault. Well, stranger things have happened, and this makes sense, as well.
Dassault is acquiring a lot of mining software and services from Gemcom, including:
Geology and Mine Planning
Surpac — the world’s most popular geology and mine planning software.
GEMS – provides collaborative geology and mine planning capabilities that support cross-functional teams involved in exploration, modelling, mine design, long-term planning, and production scheduling.
Minex – provides geology and mine planning tools for coal and other stratified deposits, ensuring resources are evaluated accurately and mined efficiently.
Whittle – strategic mine planning software used to determine and optimize the economics of open pit mining projects.
MineSched – provides scheduling for surface and underground mines of all sizes and types, improving productivity.
PCBC – is used by virtually every major mining company involved in block caving who rely on its comprehensive functionality to assist with feasibility studies, design, and production management.
Hub – provides secure remote collaboration that organizes, centralizes, and enables reliable sharing of exploration, planning, and production data over low-bandwidth connections.
Mine Production Management
InSite – records and evaluates data for service, support and production activities from the mine through to saleable product enabling rapid return on investment.
For geology, engineering, and operations needs. Services span modeling, design, optimization, scheduling, data management, workflow automation, and system configuration.
I’ll admit that as far as Dassault and sustainability are concerned, I am most familiar with its fit with SolidWorks, but sustainability and the manufacturing environment have become an integral part of the software and workflow.
Worldwide awareness of environmental issues has never been more important. Consumers are increasingly considering the environmental impact of products they buy. They’re not just looking at recyclability. They want to know about materials used and how the product was made. Manufacturers, in turn, are trying to respond to that growing demand, and this is where SolidWorks fits in.
Many designers don’t know about the life cycle assessment (LCA) process or how it could guide them to more sustainable designs. Others may think the process is too complex and time-consuming, or is someone else’s responsibility.
LCA is the detailed analysis that provides the information needed to make the most environmentally friendly decisions throughout product design process. The analysis looks at a product’s entire life, which encompasses raw material extraction (including mining), material production, manufacturing, product use, end-of-life disposal, and all of the transportation that occurs between these stages.
This acquisition is expected to be a friendly takeover and uniquely positions Dassault for the future. It should dovetail nicely with its other design brands, including SolidWorks, in the company’s efforts that continue to embrace and promote sustainability.
The Week’s Top 5
At MCADCafé we track many things, including the stories that have attracted the most interest from our subscribers. Below are the five news items that were the most viewed during last week.
Stratasys, Inc. and Objet Ltd. announced that the boards of directors of both companies have unanimously approved a definitive merger agreement under which the companies would combine in an all-stock transaction with a combined equity value of approximately $1.4 billion. Under the terms of the agreement, Stratasys will merge with a subsidiary of Objet, and Stratasys shareholders will receive one share of the new combined company for each share of Stratasys common stock they own. Upon closing of the transaction, Stratasys shareholders are expected to own 55 percent and Objet shareholders are expected to own 45 percent of the combined company. The combined company, which will retain the Stratasys name and operate under the name Stratasys Ltd., will have dual headquarters in Eden Prairie, Minnesota and Rehovot, Israel.
aPriori released its software platform, aPriori 2012r1, offering new capabilities and enhancements that expand the platform’s cost optimization functionality with new baseline processes for manufacturers in automotive, consumer products, industrial equipment and medical equipment. The release also extends aPriori’s enterprise architecture, providing a common consistent view of product costs across an organization and supporting new international costing capabilities. Key new capabilities in aPriori’s 2012r1 product cost management platform include:
CIMdata estimates that based on end-user payments, the worldwide NC software and related services market grew by 14.4% in calendar year 2011. The estimated end-user payments grew from $1.333 billion in 2010 to $1.525 billion in 2011. The market growth rate in 2011 reflects a strong overall PLM spend, continuing the recovery from the downturn in the global economy that manifested itself in dramatically higher machine tool sales into the manufacturing industry. It has been estimated that worldwide shipments of machine tools increased by 35% from 2010 to 2011, which is directly related to the volume of CAM software employed to drive these tools. CIMdata projects that in 2012 growth in manufacturing will continue and end-user payments for NC software will increase by 12.4% to $1.714 billion.
SGI announced an expansion of its long-term partnership with Altair Engineering. SGI is collaborating with Altair to develop scheduling and systems management solutions to support energy efficient computing at exascale levels. As part of the expanded relationship, SGI has entered into an OEM agreement with Altair that names the company its preferred workload management supplier. The agreement makes it possible for SGI to more cost-effectively integrate Altair’s PBS Professional scheduler on SGI HPC systems, ensuring costs remain favorable as system sizes and CPU-core counts continue to increase.
GEOMATE released TurboCalc software that combines the disciplines of sketching, calculations, and optimization in a single application. TurboCalc incorporates a graphical calculation technology that minimizes tedious mathematical calculations and equation solving from the product design process. The Goal Seek feature in TurboCalc enables users to automatically backsolve design challenges that benefit from optimization against a shape, position, or fit related design criteria. Whether users wish to perform “what-if” analysis of new product concepts or evaluate multi-faceted design challenges up-front at the system level, TurboCalc provides real-time engineering decision-support information and optimal solutions. TurboCalc can be used standalone as well as in conjunction with Microsoft Office and all popular CAD applications running Vista or Windows (32- and 64-bit).
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