During a meeting with reporters at LiveWorx, a PTC executive commented that PTC was building out technology that cut across multiple industry sectors, but manufacturing was the one sector that always got traction. The comment comes echoing back with the news that PTC has acquired ServiceMax in a move to build out its services for manufacturers.
Now, PTC has acquired field service management provider ServiceMax. According to PTC, the move is intended to help its manufacturing customers use field service management for product performance, customer satisfaction, and profitability expansion.
PTC bought ServiceMax for approximately $1.46 billion. ServiceMax provides cloud-native, product-centric field service management (FSM) software. The acquisition is expected to strengthen PTC’s closed-loop product lifecycle management (PLM) offering by extending the digital thread of product information into downstream enterprise asset management (EAM) and FSM capabilities.
ServiceMax brings aftermarket and field data into the design and manufacturing loop. “PTC’s acquisition of ServiceMax underscores the growing interest in full-cycle lifecycle analytics solutions that close the loop on optimizations across domains, said Ryan Martin, research director for industrial and manufacturing at ABI Research.
Martin noted that ServiceMax would help send field use of products back to the design engineers. “The acquisition greatly improves PTC’s posture and accelerates its ability to support closed-loop lifecycle management for customers,” Martin told Design News. “Importantly, this includes feeding field information back to engineers to improve products and extend their useful life, which could include re-use and recycling.”
He also explained how the acquisition would help PTC within individual industries. “PTC is focused on manufacturing and ServiceMax primarily supports asset-intensive industries with a notable client presence in medical devices, industrial, and oil & gas – the deal has been a long time coming,” said Martin.
PTC noted that the acquisition extends the product design and manufacturing into tracking the product once it gets into the hands of the customer. “The addition of ServiceMax will realize a key part of PTC’s closed-loop PLM strategy,” said Jim Heppelmann, president and CEO of PTC. “The PLM capabilities PTC has long offered to engineering and manufacturing departments provide the system of record for the digital definition of any product configuration. ServiceMax will complement this by providing the system of record for monitoring and servicing product instances after they leave the factory and move into customer use.”
As for whether PTC could have extended its reach into the field without the acquisition of ServiceMax, Martin explained, “PTC and its peers are constantly looking for ways to better serve and support customers. ServiceMax has little functional overlap in terms of the products it provides, and PTC’s pickup alleviates the need for the time and cost of a net-new software buildout while coming full circle on a partnership that has waxed and waned for years,” said Martin.
PTC has engaged ServieMax’s technology since 2015. Both companies support manufacturers of complex, highly configured products in medical, automotive, industrial, aerospace, and related verticals. Manufacturers in these sectors view field service as a way to maintain product performance, extend products’ lifecycles, increase customer satisfaction, drive revenue growth, and expand profitability.