"After more than 20 years, Autodesk has opted to not renew our AutoCAD reseller contract. We will stop selling AutoCAD as of February 1, 2006," writes Bob McNeel, one of the nicest and smartest guys in the CAD business.
Autodesk's move comes as no surprise, and was expected by industry pundits. McNeel's Rhino software competes with the preliminary design environment to be added to a future release of AutoCAD. As well, once a year, Autodesk renews dealer contracts -- nor not. So every dealer is on tenderhooks each January.
Bob continues, "Since our Rhino related business has grown to be more than ten times larger than our AutoCAD related business, the AutoCAD business will be missed but not uncomfortable. While we are disappointed, we are also grateful for the opportunity that Autodesk has provided us over the past 20 years. It has been a profitable and exceptionally educational experience."
He notes that his company has 150,000+ Rhino users, 3,000+ Rhino developers, and 750+ Rhino resellers. Future plans include developing new products code-named Toucan and Brazil for Rhino for design, engineering, fabrication, and manufacturing projects.