Dassault Systèmes has inked an agreement to take a majority stake in software firm Centric Software.
Centric is a solutions package that helps with product development in the retail, apparel, footwear, luxury goods and consumer goods and beauty sectors. Centric’s product life cycle management platform includes merchandise planning, product specifications, materials management and product sourcing.
Clients include Delvaux, Nina Ricci, Ted Baker, Kate Spade, Louis Vuitton, Kering Group, Michael Kors, Tommy Hilfiger, Fast Retailing, Under Armour, Mango and Li & Fung.
Dassault is a publicly traded firm in France and the terms of the agreement call for Dassault to acquire a majority stake of between 58 to 69 percent, depending on the election of Centric’s shareholders. Centric is owned by investors that include Oak Investment Partners.
Bernard Charlès, vice chairman and chief executive officer of Dassault, said, “As we are connecting the dots of the value network for customers in 12 industries and 70 segments, we understand the specific needs of the sectors that launch their products by collection.”
He said the company will help Centric create additional business value through Dassault’s “3D Experience industry processes” and that “as we did for Solidworks 20 years ago, we will keep Centric Software independently operated.”
Centric’s ceo Chris Groves said, “Our combined expertise in digital transformation, [product life cycle management], and the 3D Experience platform will allow us to accelerate the development of market-driven innovations to help our customers develop a competitive advantage and fuel growth.”
Centric is based just outside of San Jose, Calif., in the central Silicon Valley area. Groves will continue to run the business, according to Ted Smith, an investment banker from Union Square Advisors, which advised Centric on the transaction.
Smith also said Dassault has the ability to acquire the remaining shares that it won’t already own after the transaction closes “at a predetermined multiple of revenues” over the next two to three years.
The investment banker explained that the solutions package provides efficiency to the design process and get products to market “more rapidly and with better margins.”
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