CD-adapco STAR Global Conference 2016 Recap, Part 1

Change is in the air as CD-adapco announced new features in STAR-CCM+ and addressed acquisition by Siemens PLM Software.

CD-adapco Star Global Conference 2016

In a city that has certainly seen significant change over the course of its 1,100-year history, CD-adapco shared recent and upcoming changes to its software at the 2016 STAR Global Conference (SGC16), which is winding down today in Prague. But there was another topic on many of the 600+ attendees’ minds: Would anything be different now that CD-adapco is set to be acquired by Siemens?

Sharon MacDonald, president and CEO of CD-adapco. Sharron MacDonald, president and CEO of CD-adapco.

Sharron MacDonald, who became president and CEO of CD-adapco after her husband, Steve, passed away in September last year, addressed the acquisition as she kicked off the conference. Her speech followed a video tribute to her late husband, who co-founded the company and led it for 35 years.

“If we look at ‘why Siemens,’ it wasn’t Steve’s passing that initiated the sale process,” she said. “We’ve been looking to sell the company to a strategic partner for more than a year and a half, and the process was started seriously about a year ago.”

MacDonald said three serious buyers were considered, but Siemens best complemented the culture of CD-adapco.

“We were seeking a company that performs well, highly values its people and takes care of their customers — that is extremely important to us,” she said. “Also, of course, that the people who run the company are ethical and already have strategies and plans in what they want to do in making an acquisition of this type … I’m specifically speaking at this moment of CFD [computational fluid dynamics, CD-adapco’s specialty]. We spent a lot of time with the three companies. Now, I will tell you that price was also important ...”

She didn’t mention any further details of the $970 million offer that haven’t already been reported, citing routine anti-trust regulatory requirements.

Later, Willy Backers, CEO Samtech S.A., and VP, Head of 3D Simulation for Siemens PLM Software, took the stage to provide an overview of Siemens, and its vision for the digital enterprise. He began with a quote that is often attributed to Charles Darwin: “It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent that survives. It is the one that is most adaptable to change.”

Samtech was part of LMS International, which Siemens PLM Software acquired in 2012 for more than $865 million. That acquisition has largely been seen as a win for all involved. It is providing a tighter connection betwenn LMS’ testing/mechatronic simulation software and Siemens PLM Software’s NX and Teamcenter.

Sharon MacDonald said CD-adapco expects the same to be true when Siemens is cleared to acquire her company.

“It became clear that Siemens would be the choice and we’re in the process of consummating a good deal,” she said. “I have the highest confidence that it will be a win-win-win: a win for CD-adapco, a win for Siemens and a win for our customers.”

In part two of our STAR Global Conference coverage, we’ll look at how some of those customers are winning with CFD thanks, in part, to updates to STAR-CCM+ version 11.02.

You can watch the video tribute to Steve MacDonald that was broadcast at the conference below. For coverage from the show, see DE’s Twitter feed.

Read part 2 here.

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Jamie Gooch's avatar
Jamie Gooch

Jamie Gooch is the former editorial director of Digital Engineering.

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