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PTC strong arming Windchill competitors?


PTC strong arming Windchill competitors?

I was reading about other alternatives to Windchill for PLM, when I came
across this story Topic: Alternative Data Management Software:

In Reply to A. Ramirez:
I was reading about other alternatives to Windchill for PLM, when I came
across this story Topic: Alternative Data Management Software:
Is PTC trying to stop competition in the PLM market?

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I had seen that as well, and am surprised they are allowed to get away with it. Will they do the same to systems such as Matrix One, Teamcentre etc. etc. all of whome interface with Pro/E?

For smaller companies with less IT support Windchill is far too complex to both install and administer. Why should these companies not be allowed to use a solution that suits them.

If it true, then maybe it should be brought to the attention of the relevent government bodies?

Simon Lucas
Senior Project Engineer
Ricado UK Ltd


I have received information on DDM and PTC, see letter below:

"Dear DDM Customer,

I would like to officially inform you of some changes here at CSI since the acquisition of CoCreate Software by PTC. CSI are a reseller partner of CoCreate in the UK and have been for over 10 years now. Based on this and our commitment to both our CoCreate and DDM customers we have now signed a contract with PTC to be a full Value Added Reseller in the UK covering all PTC PDS solutions. In order to build this relationship PTC and CSI have aligned their businesses in the need of both their customers' interests for DDM for Pro/ENGINEER and the PLM based solutions from PTC.

We have been supporting Pro/ENGINEER with DDM for over 10 years now via the commercially available Pro/Toolkit development suite. This work started when CSI (formerly known as Definitive Applications Ltd) were the number one PTC reseller in the UK. We have an excellent installed base of DDM customers that we look forward to supporting into the future in terms of the development of new releases, technical support and services under the terms of the new agreement.

CSI have decided not to solicit new Pro/ENGINEER based customers for DDM but will continue to;

1. Develop new enhancements and maintain DDM in support of Pro/ENGINEER for existing customers.

2. Sell additional DDM licenses, support and services to existing DDM customers using Pro/ENGINEER.

CSI are committed to DDM and the CAD systems it supports including Pro/ENGINEER and would like to reassure you of our continued commitment and support. This in no way affects our existing and prospective customers of the DDM integrations to any of the other supported CAD systems. Please do not hesitate to contact me direct via the Newbury office number +44.... PTC has agreed to fully support CSI in reassuring the customers using DDM for Pro/ENGINEER.

I would also like to take this opportunity to thank you all for your valued custom and look forward to working with you into the future."

From a business standpoint I can see how that choice would be made, although it doesn't help companies running multi-CAD systems that require a cost effective solution. My company's been looking for something and Windchill's price tag is the only reason they won't consider purchasing it. Contact a DDM reseller to get the particulars. I was informed that if you purchase at least 1 license prior to 01/01/2009 you will be on their books as current customer and support will not be interrupted. It's a frustration, especially when the bean counters make the decisions.


This sort of strong-arming has already occurred in the states to some
extent. I installed a PDM solution at a previous employer called
ProductCenter. It was integrated well with Pro/E and Solidworks and was
a pretty nice solution. About 5 years ago, PTC decided they were going
to not give ProductCenter access to the Pro/E Database the way it had
always previously been given. This essentially halted the revision of
the ProductCenter solution for Pro/E at that point. IF you were using
it, you were stuck on v2001, maybe WF1.

ProductCenter was NOT a cheap solution either. Maybe 70% of Windchill,
not sure.

Basically the Pro/E users were screwed. I just looked on the
ProductCenter site and Pro/E is not listed as integrated...

How interesting .
For the business case example of your previous employer, Windchill created a chilling effect on the sales of Pro/E.

Interesting and not entirely pleasant.


In the interest of chasing short term gains, companies tend to forget that competition makes you stronger and more profitable in the long run. Otherwise we would all still be driving Ford Model T's and A's.

- marc

I have to give this story a big "hmmmmm"...

I can't find a grand total of two references on the web to this
company's PLM product, or the company itself, and that includes their
own website. I have never heard of them in the 15+ years I have been
involved with Pro/E. Either they are a non-player, or their marketing
department is just plain terrible.

If they made a deal with PTC to stop selling their product, it is either
because they were infringing on PTC's technology, or PTC paid them.
Either way, it's a perfectly legitimate business practice.
"Strongarming" it isn't.

Best Regards,

Since I was there... I will beg to differ...

1- A simple Google search of "ProductCenter" yields a link (the
first one) to their PLM solution. While they may not have huge numbers,
I think their user base was about 50k+ in 2000. I think they had a
product for at least the previous 10 years or so. I know Delta Faucet
was one of their large customers back then. Their site lists EATON,
Millipore, NASA, Saint-Gobain and Harmon (Harmon-Kardon) as success
stories. I can't speak to their marketing department ability.

2- The original company was called WTC. They have since been
purchased by Softech. A lot of the old info was on the old websites
that have since been purged. I did find this tidbit, that appears to
be pretty recent (this year) that states pretty much what I said...
5-Regular Member

I don't see that thisis thatbig of a deal...the DDMcompany decided to sign a VAR agreement with PTC. They could have decided not to sign it and continue to pursue beinga PLM software company.

ProductCenter customers had the option to buy a Toolkit module to allow their integration, but ProductCenter was also going to greatly increase their maintenance cost. ProductCenter is adecent solution, but it has shortcomings (like all PLM systems).Couple this with theadded costs and customers probably decided it wasnt worth it...if enough customers made this samechoice then ProductCenter probably madethe business decision to no longer support ProE.

Matrix, Teamcenter...etc have to support the same integration strategy that ProductCenterneeded to support, but they have large enough customer bases to justify supporting ProE. You can also flip this around because PTChas the samechallenge when they support UG NX and Catia. UG and Dassault do not play ball...they make it as difficult as possible for PTC.

Iremember when we hadone of the largest Solidworks resellers in the country in our back yard. They wanted to also support Autodesk Inventor...Solidworks said "No" so they had to cancel their Solidworks contract and now they only sell/support Inventor (see their PR titled "Applied Engineering Technology exits SolidWorks Business and becomes Autodesk Reseller of Engineering and Manufacturing Software").

Maybe I've been drinking the kool-aid too long, but this is just my angle on this discussion.

Happy Holidays!

Rick Passolt

Fishbowl Solutions

Business Continuity with Creo: Learn more about it here.

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