Jul 09 2004

Auto Components Manufacturer Kikuchi Cuts Design Time with PLM Solutions from IBM and Dassault Systèmes

Japanese manufacturer reduces development time for jigs

Tokyo, Japan and Paris, France, July 9, 2004 - IBM and Dassault Systèmes (Nasdaq: DASTY, Euronext Paris: #13065, DSY.PA) announced today that Japanese auto component manufacturer Kikuchi Co., Ltd. has reduced the cycle time required for designing jigs for its welding assembly lines by 22% only three months after deploying their PLM Solutions.

Kikuchi deployed CATIA V5, for 3D digital product definition, and SMARTEAM, for collaborative product data and lifecycle management, with the goal of developing jigs and fixtures more efficiently.

Kikuchi also implemented CATIA V5’s knowledgeware and digital mock-up (DMU) capabilities in order to improve the accuracy of robot off-line teaching, shorten modeling time, and enable more flexibility in design changes. Kikuchi uses CATIA V5’s design templates to automatically select recommended parts from a standard parts library, thereby reducing the parts procurement costs. Kikuchi plans to expand its PLM deployment to its production engineering domain with the goal of shortening design cycle time by up to 50 percent.

IBM and Dassault Systèmes combined the functionalities of CATIA V5 and SMARTEAM with proven industry-specific PLM best practices to enable Kikuchi to accelerate its PLM implementation and maximize its return on investment. IBM and Dassault Systèmes in Japan have formed a task force of experts to focus on developing best practices for development and maintenance processes in the jigs and fixtures industry with the goal of generating greater industrial value, profitability and productivity.

“The auto components development process is becoming increasingly global,” said Yutaka Miyamoto, Managing Corporate Officer, General Manager, Development Division, Kikuchi Co. Ltd. “IBM PLM Solutions developed by Dassault Systèmes enable us to strengthen our competitiveness not just in Japan but also in North America, Central and South America and Asia.”

“The gain Kikuchi has made in streamlining its welding processes underscores the power of what PLM can do. Kikuchi’s 22% reduction in cycle time—realized in less than three months—demonstrates not only the efficiency that CATIA and SMARTEAM deliver, but also  the value of best practices specifically developed for designing jigs and fixtures,” said Scott Hopkins, general manager, IBM Product Lifecycle Management. “Kikuchi’s implementation is an effective combination of powerful functionality and world-class domain expertise. We will continue to support manufacturers with industry-specific solutions and methodologies that will empower them to realize the benefits of our world-class PLM offering.”

“Kikuchi’s successful implementation of our solutions and revolutionary jig-design methodology are showcases for how PLM business transformation produces major return on investment,” said Christian Nardin, managing director, Dassault Systèmes Asia. “Kikuchi’s deployment of Dassault Systèmes’ PLM solutions underscores how those solutions enable companies to better respond to the new challenges of global competition.”

Kikuchi will hold a session on its PLM practices at the Japan CATIA Forum to be held in Tokyo July 8 and 9. Visit the official website of the forum at www.jcforum.com.