DSCC 2010 – Day 1

Al Bunshaft, Director of DS America, kicked off DSCC 2010 explaining the theme of this conference “Dream to Life: Envision and Invent the Future“. He announced that more than 800 people were in attendance.

Next up was DS President and CEO Bernard Charles. The title of his presentation ease “Lifelike Experience for Sustainable Innovation“.

Here are a few quotes from his presentation:

“We want our customers to fall in love with our products.”

“When we created V4 in the nineties the aim was to be able to create a digital mockup of a product. For V5 the aim was to create a platform for PLM. The heart of V6 is social innovation.”

“I invested 2 billion in V6. We created a list of companies that we targeted for acquisition.”

“Last quarter we increased 70% in emerging markets”

“We have had 200,000 downloads for DraftSight in 3 months.”

“There is a reason why I have 3D VIA on my shirt today. It is a very important part of the lifelike experience that we envision with V6”

“With Exalead I don’t want to compete with prestigious companies like Google. But I want to solve the Enterprise problem by creating search based applications. We can index every bit of text in any document, including DWG files.”

Next Robert Trecapelli, Director of Digital Innovation at Ford, spoke about the Global Product strategy of his company. To put it simply, sell of brands that are not profitable and continue to improve the ones that are.They also intend to reduce the number of platforms or “name plates”. For example, there is just one Fiesta and Focus globally. Previously there were different cars for the same name plate for America, Europe and other regions. He went ahead to give examples of how CATIA was helping Ford do that.

He also spoke about the pilot project that Ford has initiated for implementing V6. He summed up Ford’s benefit of it’s association with DS by saying, “We now do 4 times more design iterations with half the people. DS is an important part of our plan.

In 2005 DS signed a strategic partnership with Microsoft. Caglayan Arkan, General Manager of Worldwide Manufacturing and Resources Sector at Microsoft, came on stage to speak about how his company was working towards solving Enterprise problems.

Michael Teljohan, Director of Product Innovation Capability at Proctor & Gamble, came on stage to talk about P&G PLM story. Apparently the P&G CEO has challenged his employees to make P&G the most digitized company in the world. They started using PLM in the late 90’s. They created several very successful but non integrated PLM based systems. But then found that they were not getting the full benefit of PLM. And for good reason because this is what their system looked like.

So in 2008 they reinvented their PLM strategy by finding a strategic partner in Dassault Systemes. One of the main reasons P&G chose DS is “chemistry”. Apparently both companies share it. He ended by saying that P&G are betting heavily that DS is going to continue to turn strategy into solutions.

The last item of the General Session was a customer panel discussion. DS invited senior executives of four customers to come on stage, share their experiences and answer questions from the audience. Each executive gave a presentation about their company and how they work with Dassault Systems.

First up was Paul Lomangino of Tesla Motors which is in an early stage of implementing ENOVIA V6 and are looking forward to implementing CATIA V5 and 3D VIA. Down the road they plan on implementing CATIA V6 and DELMIA V6.

Greg Miller, VP of IT of the Surgical Technologies Division or Medtronic, spoke about his division’s experience in implementing PLM. Medtronic today has 41,000 employees, operates in 120 countries was first known for their external pace maker in the 50’s. Medtronic felt the need for PLM for compliance, improving efficiency, collaboration. They plan to go live with their ENOVIA V6 implementation on January 10th.

Jim Dickerson, Director of Integrated Product Development at IBM, spoke about why the 400,000 employee strong company decided to use ENOVIA V6 PLM to replace multiple PLM systems spread across the Enterprise. By 2011 they intend too replace their legacy PDM system and by 2015 they intend to extend ENOVIA to “achieve their strategic objectives“. I guess this just goes to show the magnitude of their PLM implementation.

John Shorter, Engineering CIO of GE Energy, was next. But I had to miss his presentation because of the lunch hosted by Bernard Charles and Al Bunshaft for media and analysts.

After lunch, I interviewed Lynne Wilson, the CEO of 3D VIA and then finally the big boss himself – Bernard Charles. To put it mildly, the man is a live wire. His excitement is contagious. I’ll post my interview with him after I get a chance to transcribe it. If you found my conversation with Jeff Ray interesting, you are going to feel the same way about my conversation with Bernard Charles.

I managed to squeeze out something from Bernard. Something that will make Autodesk and other 2D CAD vendors quite uncomfortable. DS has already been playing in the AEC space with Live Buildings. They have been working with companies like Gehry to provide high end specialized AEC solutions. I have been saying on this blog that DS will one day enter the general AEC market. I have even called DraftSight a trojan horse as their first step into AEC.

I asked Bernard if DS would be going after the general AEC market. After trying to dodge the question a couple of times, he finally reluctantly replied. “Yes, we will go there. We will go there progressively“.