Commentary: Straight Talk from SolidWorks CEO John McEleney

by Ira Breskin

The top executive of SolidWorks, the world's largest producer of 3-D MCAD software, is more concerned about the competitive threat posed by an upstart than its largest rival. That's because recent sales gains posted by two-year-old Inventor -- the head-to-head product offered by Autodesk - are outpacing those posted by No. 2 Unigraphics Corp.'s older SolidEdge offering, John McEleney, SolidWorks CEO, said this week during a telephone interview.

"The reason for Inventor's gains are twofold," says McEleney. First, Autodesk, a major player in the 2D CAD market, is offering Inventor for a nominal amount ($75), to customers that purchase an upgraded version of Mechanical Desktop, the company's core product. Second, SolidEdge's distribution arm isn't fully extended because that company's direct sales force and indirect Value Added Distributors are working at cross purposes, McEleney contends. SolidWorks continues to grow moderately, McEleney says.

While he won't quantify SolidWorks' sales increases for 2002 or for the year, to date, McEleney didn't quibble with the 16.9% industry growth projection recently offered by Daratech Inc., the respected market research firm based in Cambridge, Mass. In fact, SolidWorks still continues to post the Help Wanted sign outside company headquarters in Concord, Massachussetts. It plans to moderately increase payroll this year, like last, McEleney said.

SolidWorks generates most of its incremental revenue selling Windows-based 3D CAD software to its core customers: smaller, agile manufacturers and design-intensive production shops. Only about 5% to 10% of SolidWork's customers are large enough to be prime candidates for Catia, a sister product also owned by parent company Dassault Systemes, that offers pricier and more powerful CAD software, according to McEleney.

In 2001, seven-year-old SolidWorks increased sales by 28% to $115 million from $90 million. Introduction of SolidWorks Office software in the 2001 third quarter has helped spur company sales, McEleney said. The company's operating income last year exceeded 28%, he said. According to McEleney, the geographic break out of SolidWorks sales is 40% in North America; 35% in Europe; 10% in Japan and 15% in the rest of the world.

Ira Breskin, a freelance editor/writer specializing in business and technology issues, is a frequent contributor to Business Week, Newsday, and the New York Times. He holds a B.A. from Columbia University and a Knight-Bagehot Fellowship in Economics and Business Journalism, Columbia University Business School. He may be reached at Email Contact.

Comments? Feedback? Tell us what you think about this topic or if you have additional information you'd like to share on this subject! Submit your comments to: Email Contact.



Review Article Be the first to review this article
Rand3D

Featured Video
Jobs
Sr Mechanical Design Engineer for Medtronic at mounds view, MN
Mechanical Design Engineer 3 for KLA-Tencor at Milpitas, CA
Geospatial Systems Administrator for BAE Systems Intelligence & Security at arnold, MO
Urban Designer - Urban Design/Planning for SERA Architects, Inc at Portland, OR
Senior Mechanical Engineer for BAE Systems Intelligence & Security at Arlington, VA
Geospatial Analyst - Senior for BAE Systems Intelligence & Security at Springfield, VA
Upcoming Events
ESPRIT World 2018 at Indianapolis Marriott Downtown 350 West Maryland Street Indianapolis IN - Jun 11 - 15, 2018
HxGN LIVE 2018 at The Venetian Las Vegas NV - Jun 12 - 15, 2018
IMTS2018 International Manufacturing Tech Show at McCormick Place Chicago IL - Sep 10 - 15, 2018
Kenesto: 30 day trial
SolidCAM: SolidCAM Dec 2017 Campaign Save 28 percent



Internet Business Systems © 2017 Internet Business Systems, Inc.
25 North 14th Steet, Suite 710, San Jose, CA 95112
+1 (408) 882-6554 — Contact Us, or visit our other sites:
AECCafe - Architectural Design and Engineering EDACafe - Electronic Design Automation GISCafe - Geographical Information Services TechJobsCafe - Technical Jobs and Resumes ShareCG - Share Computer Graphic (CG) Animation, 3D Art and 3D Models
  Privacy PolicyAdvertise