Interview with Tony Hemmelgarn, CEO of Siemens PLM Software
Siemens recently acquired Mendix, one of the leading providers of so-called no-code / low-code application development. Such systems allow applications to be developed by people who are not professional programmers. Much of the development is visual and highly intuitive and does not need to be "programmed." In this way, apps can be developed in a fraction of the usual time. The acquisition of Mendix also plays a role in the development of apps for the industry cloud MindSphere. But - and this shows the interview with Siemens PLM Software CEO Tony Hemmelgarn - not just there.
Ulrich Sendler: Was the acquisition of Mendix especially focused on pushing MindSphere apps?
Tony Hemmlegarn (photos Sendler): With the acquisition of Mendix, Siemens entered the highly attractive and fast growing (>40% CAGR*) Low-Code Rapid Application Development business. The acquisition of Mendix was part of our continued investments in providing our customers with the most comprehensive digital enterprise solution connecting virtual product development and production planning with the real production environment and lifecycle support.
The focus for the acquisition was to make it easier for our customers to build apps and leverage the data created with tools across our portfolio including Teamcenter, Mentor and MOM products. While the acquisition certainly benefits MindSphere and MindSphere customers with low-code software development for the industrial internet of things (IoT), this wasn’t the primary objective.
Ulrich Sendler: How can your customers of the broad portfolio of industry software benefit from Mendix low-code development? Can you give some examples?
Tony Hemmelgarn: Mendix's cloud-native low-code application development empowers customers using PLM, MOM, EDA, CAE, and MindSphere to make information on their digital twins – of the product, the manufacturing environment and the real-time product performance – universally accessible and useful for their business.
Enterprises can “make with more” because the platform helps conquer the significant challenges and bottlenecks around software development. There simply isn’t enough software development talent to go around. Mendix’s new “make with more” capabilities help solve in important ways by bringing no-code and low-code together into an industry first: a single powerful unified no-code/low-code platform that has built-in AI-assisted development. With the Mendix platform, customers do not have to be programmers to deploy a low-code approach to application development within their product lifecycle with customer engagement apps, operational efficiency apps or legacy migration apps that all easily hook into the existing product and manufacturing environments.
Example: A leading global Oil & Gas company approached Siemens with a goal to double net earnings and increase product launch velocity, while overcoming internal collaboration challenges across 30+ teams and 46+ existing tools/systems. The customer’s three key solution requirements were visually intuitive tools, a fully integrated approach and live intelligence of the lifecycle. They even came with a vision and a mock-up of an app they wanted to have to manage their portfolio. By utilizing Mendix and a unique user interface on top of and synchronising with Teamcenter, the team built a working demonstration app in 4 days that met the customers' vision – something that would have normally taken weeks or even months.
Ulrich Sendler: Is Mendix putting Siemens PLM Software in a new position compared to the competition? What is the biggest change?
Tony Hemmelgarn: Through the acquisition of Mendix, Siemens provides both large enterprises and small to medium sized businesses looking to digitally transform their business, the ability to connect data and processes through cloud-native applications at unprecedented speed and scale. We believe that making it much easier, and faster, for our customers to build apps via the Mendix low-code/no-code platform provides significant advantages over competitive offerings.
Last month Mendix held their conference “Mendix World” again with almost 5.000 participants. With the launch of the Spring ‘19 Release, the Mendix no-code/low-code application development platform is now even more powerful and attractive for companies across all the industries we serve and beyond. The company’s new “Go make it” brand philosophy is designed to help business and IT collaborate closely together to unleash their digital futures by making with more, making it smart and making at scale.
Enterprises can now also “make it smart” by building enterprise and mobile applications with rich native experiences that are intelligent, proactive, and contextual. And they can “make at scale” because the Mendix Spring ‘19 Release introduces new capabilities, such as Mendix for SAP HANA, that empower modernizing core systems and enable enterprises to build large application portfolios at scale to keep pace with business growth.