Enterprise asset management (EAM) and computerized maintenance management system software vendor PSDI's renaming of itself to MRO Software realigns the company around the blue-collar maintenance, repair and operations (MRO) procurement process. The move also heralds a more pragmatic approach to e-marketplaces as well as a revamping of the vendor's offerings.
On 12 December 2000, PSDI announced a formal change of company name to MRO Software, subject to shareholder approval (expected at the company's annual meeting in February 2001). The new name was announced at a meeting of financial analysts in PSDI's offices in Bedford, Massachusetts. The company's stock symbol will change from PSDI to MROI after the change is formally approved.
When PSDI re-merged its e-business unit with its application software group, the e-business unit received top billing. PSDI marketed two offerings: a traditional EAM software product, Maximo, and an Internet-procurement-focused product, MRO.com.
The new company merges these offerings, and categorizes Maximo as a "demand" product and MRO.com as a "supply" product — indicating a more supply-chain-oriented positioning. In doing so, MRO Software maximizes its position as the link between customers and suppliers for blue-collar MRO goods (see Research Note TG-10-0813 , " The MRO E-Procurement Civil War: Blue vs. White ").
Drawing on its understanding and experience in the industrial supply market, MRO Software is refining and expanding its MRO.com offerings to suit separate participants in the supply chain:
Maximo is for the end users that generate demand.
Slated for release before the end of 2000, "mro distributor" focuses on the distributors in the supply chain.
Slated for release in 1Q01, "mro manufacturer" will provide specific functionality suited to manufacturers of MRO goods.
Slated for release in 2Q01, "mro connect" will provide technology for direct integration of buy and sell marketplaces.
These announcements further highlight the company’s adaptation to EAM market trends. As PSDI, the company embraced client/server but avoided overinvesting in what turned out to be a transitional technology. With market focus turning to e-commerce, PSDI quickly formed MRO.com to gain market share and mind share ahead of the majority of its competitors. Now, with industry growing cold on dot-com companies operating for their own sake and market interest increasing in leveraging the supply chain to improve enterprise performance, PSDI is changing again. PSDI, like its peers in blue-collar procurement, is better positioned to serve this market need than rivals focused on white-collar MRO procurement.
PSDI Maximo customers focused on maintenance functionality should not plan for significant enhancements to that area during this period, when traditional functionality will likely be emphasized less. PSDI is assuming that its current leadership in maintenance functionality will survive a period of changed focus while it attends to e-procurement initiatives. Maximo customers investigating e-procurement offerings should consider the MRO Software strategy for MRO.com before turning to outside e-procurement providers. All manufacturing and asset-intensive enterprises reviewing maintenance and procurement strategies with a view to participating in e-marketplaces should consider PSDI's offerings as it represents a cohesive strategy for the MRO marketplace.
Analytical Sources: Kristian Steenstrup and Daniel Miklovic, Manufacturing Applications Strategies