The deal will take some time to complete, probably not until sometime in the first half of 2010. In return, Dassault becomes one of IBM's Global Alliance partners.
The reason: Dassault wants all the direct sales it can get, says ceo Bernard Charles.
Looking forward, the wide adoption of 3D lifelike experience and PLM will require the combination of direct sales, our network of partners, and online communities.
Direct sales are more profitable when you don't need to share it.
The largest acquisition in CAD history was the sale of UGS to private investors, and then its subsequent purchase by Siemens PLM Systems -- around $2.4 billion. Another big one was Microsoft's acquisition of Visio (and IntelliCAD source code) for $1.2 billion a decade ago.
Will this lead to other big CAD vendors feeling the pressure to make big, tactical acquisitions? Obvious big targets include ANSYS (FEA), SpaceClaim (direct modeling), and Bentley Systems (water and stuff) -- each of which could go for similar price tag, give or take a few hundred million.
I am unfamiliar with PLM firms, but I wonder if some of them are up late tonight talking on their iPhones with acquisition advisors on how to pretty themselves up for potential suitors.