Monday, January 7, 2002

Tecnomatix expands business model

Published in Interface Tech News

NASHUA, N.H. ‹ Moving ahead in its return to profitability, Tecnomatix Technologies recently became a reseller of Seattle-based GraphiCode's iGerber manufacturing file format conversion software.

While the deal is not a giant one, it should mark a positive step for the electronics manufacturing service company.

"It will have a medium-sized impact on our business dealings," said Tecnomatix product marketing manager John Dixon. "It allows us to broaden our customer base and provide better service."

According to company officials, the iGerber software has already been well-integrated with Tecnomatix's eMPower software suite, but customers will now be able to order the two together, rather than making two separate transactions.

It is a continuing part of Tecnomatix's transition from providing specific software solutions for the manufacturing process to offering what it calls "manufacturing process management," a set of software tools offering end-to-end manufacturing integration.

Analyst Bruce Jenkins, executive vice president of Daratech, said the reseller deal is a good move, and applauded the company's progress in the transition, which he termed "challenging."

Jenkins said offering manufacturers a way to streamline not only their design process, but also the manufacturing process is "one of the most pressing strategic priorities for manufacturers today," and a big move toward profit increases for Tecnomatix and its customers.

While Tecnomatix's third quarter figures did show a small net loss, Jenkins said he agrees with company projections of a five-percent profit margin in 2002. He added that the economy is impacting the company, but not by much.

"The general economic environment is a problem for them, as it is for everybody," Jenkins said.

He explained that while Wall Street and many investors are optimistic about a turnaround by the middle of 2002, some Tecnomatix customers are more guarded, which could cause some problems.

Not only is the company targeting the right market, but they're going about it in the right way, according to Jenkins. The company is offering "exactly what's needed," he said.

But, he added, the biggest challenge will continue to be the transition from specific tools to an overall package for the manufacturing process, and, so far, they have done well.

"They have already faced it, and they succeeded and are moving beyond it," Jenkins said.