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12/20/2004
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PLM Vendor Centric Software To Buy Framework Technologies

Centric will add Framework's portfolio of project-collaboration, product-innovation, and portfolio-management software to its product-life-cycle-management suite.

Centric Software Inc., a provider of product-life-cycle-management software, said Monday that it will buy Framework Technologies, a privately held developer of project-collaboration, product-innovation, and portfolio-management software. Terms of the deal weren't disclosed.

Global competition, which is forcing manufacturers to bring innovative products to market faster, and the need for manufacturers and suppliers to move from a purchasing to a co-development relationship, is the major driver behind the acquisition, according to Centric. While Centric focuses on the automotive and aerospace sectors in Europe, Framework works with pharmaceutical, consumer-goods, and engineering and construction companies in the United States. Combining offerings from Centric and Framework will provide greater geographic and industry opportunities, the companies say.

Centric's Innovation Management software is designed to help businesses share ideas, track deliverables, and conduct strategic analysis and scenario evaluations. Centric's 3D Innovation Rooms help manufacturers integrate documents and computer-aided design files into existing systems. Framework's software focuses on the early phase of the product life cycle, from the creation of ideas to market introduction, and helps manufacturers execute their facilities and construction projects.

Centric also plans to partner with software, service, and systems integrators such as IBM and Dassault Systemes. The company recently revealed a $19 million private-equity placement led by Oak Investment Partners, with co-investors Masthead Venture Partners and existing investor Boston Capital Ventures. On Monday, Centric disclosed an additional $4.5 million private-equity placement from Oak Investment Partners and Bank of America.

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