The company Bentley has achieved its initial public rating and while in 2010 the company adjusted for exchange rates and acquisitions, they have regained revenue momentum from the downturn. Bentley made mention that Autodesk, their main competitor, is “ahead but not out of reach, we have sooner regained revenue than they have in 2010.”
Posts Tagged ‘Autodesk’
In a Webex this week Amar Hanspal, senior vice president, Platform Solutions and Emerging Business for Autodesk talked about the 2012 portfolio which will soon be available.
Because customers are successful using multiple products, Autodesk is not offering single products in this release, but rather suites of products for all kinds of design. He called it an “integrated software approach.” A lot of discussion was spent on artists and production facilitators in the entertainment industry, a big customer of Autodesk products.
The suites cost “a few hundred dollars more than an individual software program” but offer more in terms of interoperability and the entire suite will be offered on a USB thumb drive.
Here is a list of the various suites:
(inc. AutoCAD, Showcase, Sketchbook Designer, Mudbox, 3ds Max Design and Alias Design)
Building Design Suite*
(inc. AutoCAD, AutoCAD Architecture, AutoCAD MEP, AutoCAD Structural Detailing, Showcase, SketchBook Designer, Revit Architecture, Revit Structure, Revit MEP, 3ds Max Design, Inventor, Navisworks Manage and Quantity Takeoff)
Infrastructure Design Suite*
(inc. AutoCAD, AutoCAD Map 3D, Navisworks Simulate, AutoCAD Civil 3D, 3ds Max Design and Navisworks Manage)
Plant Design Suite*
(inc. AutoCAD, AutoCAD P&ID, AutoCAD Plant 3D, Navisworks Simulate and Navisworks Manage)
Factory Design Suite*
(inc. AutoCAD Architecture, AutoCAD Mechanical, Autodesk Vault, Autodesk Showcase, Autodesk Factory Design Suite Utilities, Inventor, 3ds Max, Navisworks Siimulate and Inventor Professional)
Product Design Suite*
(inc. AutoCAD Mechanical, Autodesk Sketchbook Designer, Autodesk Vault, Autodesk Showcase, Autodesk Mudbox, Inventor, 3ds Max Design, Inventor Professional and Alias Design)
Entertainment Creation Suite*
(inc. Autodesk 3ds Max or Autodesk Maya, Autodesk Softimage, Autodesk MotionBuilder and Autodesk Mudbox)
* – Software included varies according to Suite versions; Standard, Premium or Ultimate.
I will be attending the AEC Media Summit in Waltham, Mass. in two weeks and will have a full report on the suites at that time.
What will we see in terms of cost for infinite computing after it’s in place?
You have two things going on simultaneously: you have a deep curve into the climbing price of computing – computing is the only asset that’s going down in price while everything else going up. From the commercial perspective we’re shifting some of the costs from customers back to us. Generally people providing this today are not as computer intensive – like Salesforce.com.
We’re affordably doing it; you can now try AutoCAD LT running off the cloud.
Right now the spot price for cloud computing is at 3 cents an hour.
If I’ve got infinite computing available, when and where do I make the decision to use it?
We’re going to have a hybrid computing model. Because of the tablet, there is incredible computing power and you don’t need to be connected. You’ll continue to have local devices – and the cloud for compute intensive jobs. We don’t build out our own cloud, for most of them we are trying to use commoditized resources, if you need an answer within short period of time you pay more; there are some models like this. What if people are able to solve problems they were never able to solve before?
We think the cloud is a choice. Some customers no longer want the local choice, where they need power and resources; they want another choice of deployment. Choice is available to all customers. Pricing models are changing; mobile devices are putting pressure on the market. The way we can use infinite computing is by offering different models for those who only need this software two hours a month.
I’m not sure if it has any fundamental pressure on pricing in general, what pressure it does introduce is offset by greater capability. The price of fundamental resources goes down while capabilities go far up.
What kind of delivery models will you see?
You’ll see electronic software downloads rather than boxes, some people deploying through streaming, etc., and other services that purely exist in the cloud only. You’ll have a variety. We’re looking at our subscription program for people to get information on options.
What about Autodesk’s growth?
Our business without acquisitions is no better or worse than other years, we have 12-15% growth rate in 2010, and that can be changed by economic conditions and by acquisitions. We have factored in the idea of infinite computing but at a low level.
Are you addressing multicore?
We have done a lot of multicore work on our products. It works only when you’re doing a lot of the same thing, like sorting a lot of data items. Our studies show it accounts for only about 15 percent of what engineers do. That’s why the breakthrough is making the cloud available. We can run a larger analysis process across more iterations.
We have some amount of work in foundation stuff, there are some ways to do things in a multithreaded way. It’s a valuable technique, not quite as valuable in general purpose computing as you might think. We’re much more interested in what allows you to optimize an answer to a question.
What about the consumer market?
Our customers are mostly professionals, 1 percent top account for 30 percent of our revenue, 70% of customers account for other revenue. Historically we haven’t done much with consumers, SketchBook Pro is way past 2 million people who have downloaded it, and it has done amazingly well. It’s phenomenal in what it’s been able to do in terms of generating awareness. Selling SketchBook at $8.99 is not a way to make profitable business but it has done a great job of raising awareness, to understand also what people are looking for. There is a greater influence of the consumer market going back into the professional market.
We need to pay attention to the consumer market and see what is going on, such as the community that gets created around Flickr, that social community around professionals. I don’t think our business will change to become a consumer business, although we have more people coming in at the entry stage as new users and students, a feeder population, and are getting people interested in design and math.
We need tools that everyone can take advantage of.
People are more interested in moving things to mobile devices. Open source was the end of an era – commodization. There is still open source software out there successfully deployed in server based environments, but most of our software doesn’t fall into that category.
At AU it appeared that geospatial had an uncertain future at Autodesk. Senior director, Infrastructure Modeling Product Line Paul McRoberts stated at Autodesk’s AEC Technology Day this week that geospatial is the underlying component for all of Autodesk products. The FDO platform is extensible open source software that can be noted in transportation, water and waste water, land development, power and energy.
McRoberts said that 24% of the gross revenue collected by AEC firms is for planning, according to an American Council of Engineering Companies (ACEC) study. It might appear that the role of geospatial at Autodesk is visual in nature: modeling and visualization for water, transportation, energy and water and wastewater, where getting public approval is primary to getting projects off the ground. What is needed here is a way to show a workflow including location and geospatial data. The technologies spoken most about – 3ds Max for visualization and Dynamite VSP Exporter are for showing how problems can be solved, interoperability, and being able to migrate information to others.
The laser scanning environment and lidar data play a part in this. McRoberts said that surveying may become a thing of the past. With the need in many places for ground truth data, particularly in areas that aren’t readily accessible with laser scanning equipment or lidar, I think it may be a long time before this is realized.
“Digital cities,” a hot buzz term of a year or two ago, will now go by the name “sustainable cities” as one part of a greater vision including extension of assets such as tranmission lines into rural communities. It is part of the scope of LandXplorer, in its quest to address large scale projects and visualization. McRoberts said LandXplorer holds a GIS layer underneath that contains real data.
On Wednesday Autodesk stock fell 2% after the company’s announcements of profitability on Tuesday:
Tech Stocks Head South, Wall Street Journal, Thursday, February 25, 2010
News stories on Autodesk’s Q4 announcement:
Autodesk, Inc. Q4 2010 Earnings Call Transcript Seeking Alpha
Autodesk (ADSK) Reports Strong Q4 Results, Shares Jump StreetInsider.com, February 23, 2010
One would think that a large software company such as Autodesk would have more to do than to ferret out eBay sellers who are selling their software. But that obviously is not the case:
“The case of Timothy Vernor, the man Autodesk tried to stop selling their software on eBay, has had another day in court.
Vernor is a full-time eBay seller, usually of comic books. But in 2005 he found a copy of AutoCAD design software at a garage sale – software which usually sells for about $4,000.
Shortly after he put the CD on eBay the auction house received a lawyer’s letter from Autodesk alleging infringements of the Digital Millenium Copyright Act. eBay pulled the auction but Vernor complained and eBay, and Autodesk, eventually backed down.
But when Vernor chanced upon some more Autodesk CDs, apparently at another garage sale, they again hit him with DMCA notices.”
-Channel Register, Oct. 1, 2009, UK
Each of the major financial news outlets have by now had their say about Autodesk’s announcement of second quarter fiscal 2010 financial results. Below is a compilation of those reports from different sources.
Reuters sees the news as positive as Autodesk posted “stronger-than-expected quarterly results on Thursday as it cut costs, boosting its stock in after-hours trade.”
MarketWatch’s Benjamin Pimentel seconded that with an upbeat report:
“Management is seeing signs of stabilization and exited the second quarter with less volatility,” Deutsche Bank analyst Greg Dunham told clients, while the Wall Street Journal was less than positive in pointing out that Autodesk’s fiscal second-quarter profit sank 88% on lower sales and margins as well as restructuring charges.