Autodesk’s Latest Acquisition Plans to Bring More Product Data Management to the Cloud

May 12, 2021 by Sara McCaslin

Autodesk is acquiring Upchain, a global provider of PLM and PDM, to bring more product data and product lifecycle management to their users.

Autodesk recently announced the upcoming acquisition of Upchain, whose software platforms will enhance the organization and accessibility of critical product data. Upchain provides cloud-based  PLM (Product Lifecycle Management) and PDM (Product Data Management) solutions to customers worldwide. This follows the acquisition of Innovyze by Autodesk, as announced in March.


Upchain PLM and PDM Software

The PLM software from Upchain makes it possible for teams to collaborate in real-time products while maintaining data security. This solution includes product dashboards, revision control, 3D CAD viewers that support markup, automated part numbers, Microsoft Office and CAD plugins, and API integration.


For companies to remain competitive, their engineering teams need fast, real-time cloud-based access to product data. Image used courtesy of Autodesk


Upchain’s PDM software is used to track and control product data, often in CAD files. It includes revision control, document management, secure cloud storage, ECR (Engineering Change Request) creation and management, and BOM (Bill of Materials) management to consolidate all the data about a design project for easy access by team members when they are working remotely.

Their unified cloud platform has successfully eliminated the boundaries encountered when using more traditional approaches to PLM and PDM. Upchain’s approach places data at the center of the product development process, allowing the natural complexity of product design and manufacture to be more easily managed.

Upchain has a very diversified customer base, as well. Their products are already being used in aerospace, automation, transportation, industrial machines, and entertainment.


Upchain’s Acquisition by Autodesk

The primary goal of Autodesk acquiring Upchain is to increase collaboration across the product value chain, which is decentralized for engineers, suppliers, manufacturers, and other key stakeholders. 


Product development involves massive amounts of data, with much of the data in the form of 3D CAD files. Image used courtesy of Pixabay


The PLM and PDM solutions developed by Upchain support Autodesk’s goal of a more robust end-to-end cloud-based design and manufacturing platform.

According to Andrew Anagnost, “By integrating Upchain with our existing offerings, Autodesk customers will be able to easily move data without barriers and will be empowered to unlock and harness valuable insights that can translate to fresh ideas and business success.” 


Autodesk Integrating Various CAD Systems 

Autodesk will not only support the integration of Upchain solutions with their products (e.g., AutoCAD and Fusion 360) but with other commonly used CAD systems as well. By integrating Upchain’s PLM and PDM with Autodesk’s product offerings, product teams can make more use of their time and bring products to market in less time.

Combining the modern PLM and PDM tools created by upchain with Autodesk products is expected to significantly reduce time to market for adopters, which could give them a key advantage in today’s highly competitive economy. The acquisition is expected to close during Autodesk’s second quarter of the fiscal year 2022, which ends on 31 July 2021.