IBM and Siemens Partner around Enterprise PLM

DN Staff

June 22, 2009

3 Min Read
IBM and Siemens Partner around Enterprise PLM

In yet a further retreat away from long-time design toolpartner Dassault Systemes, IBM announced a partnership with Siemens PLM Software for anew set of PLM applications and consulting offerings based on Siemens'Teamcenter PLM platform and IBM'smiddleware and service-oriented architecture (SOA) framework.

Siemens' forthcoming Teamcenter 8.0 comes ready to use withIBM's ProductDevelopment Information Framework (PDIF), a set of extensions built on SOAfor integrating multiple applications, and comes preconfigured with the WebSphere middleware software and DB2database management system. Siemens and IBM officials claim it is the only PLMplatform to be so tightly integrated with IBM's SOA and integrationarchitecture and for the first time, doesn't force customers to choose betweenthe two environments.

The pair, which have been actively working together for morethan a year, say the relationship is all about strengthening PLM as anenterprise platform. "This is not just a reseller deal," says Mark Hanny, IBM'svice president ISV alliances. "This is about the transformation of PLM beyondthe engineering workstation. The central theme is about how companies canconnect with other companies and suppliers around the world."

Teamcenter has historically been configured with the Oracledatabase or with SQL Server. For over 20 years, IBM has partnered with Dassaulton PLM and CAD tools, reselling its Enovia PLM platform and CATIA 3-D CAD tool.Despite the new Siemens agreement, IBM will continue to resell Dassaultproducts, officials say.

As companies look to PLM to streamline their businessprocesses around product development and innovation, integration of systemsbecomes a thornier problem â€“ one this latest alliance can help resolve, accordingto both IBM and Siemens officials. Specifically, by offering Teamcenter preconfiguredwith the IBM blue stack of technology, the companies aim to reduce theheavy-lifting typically required to get PLM systems to talk to other keyenterprise platforms. Moreover, by creating such a tightly-coupled environment,companies will be able to focus more on business process transformation with PLMas opposed to the nuts and bolts of integration work, officials say."Traditionally, the client buys the middleware and the application and theyfigure out how to make it work together with consulting help," says Rob Thomas,IBM's worldwide vice president of business development for informationmanagement. "(With this approach) the biggest benefit is to the client.Overnight, it changes the expectations around deployment and ongoingmaintenance."

Those savings are indeed important, but only for thosecustomers that buy into the IBM SOA. "If an end user buys into theIBM stack and Siemens software solution at the Teamcenter level, they'reultimately going to save some money that they'd have had to spend to do theintegration themselves," says Ken Versprille, PLM research director for CPD Associates, a market researchfirm focusing on product development.

As part of their relationship, IBM and Siemens will alsooptimize Siemens PLM Software applications that can run IBM server and storagedevices as well as collaborate on joint sales and consulting engagements.

With Teamcenter 8.0's Structure Manager, large assemblies can be quickly navigated to different parts of the product tree.

IBM and Siemens Partner around Enterprise PLM A

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