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What will become of Supply Chain Management (SCM)?

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After completing our analysis of 2014 Mergers and Acquisitions in Manufacturing Automation one standout was that there were very few acquisitions by SCM (Supply Chain Management) companies.  In fact, SCM had the fewest acquisitions of any of the manufacturing automations sectors.  At the same time, it was one of the highest growth sectors we evaluated, consistently reaching well into double digits organically.  So why the question?

At the same time it seems that this high growth sector seems to be under assault again by the larger (and lower growth) PLM and ERP companies as they seek to revitalize their own growth through acquisitions. PLM company Dassault Systems’ quiet acquisition of Quintiq (SCM) and privately held ERP Company Infor’s acquisition of Saleslogix (loosely related Customer Relationship Management, CRM) are 2014’s examples that reinforce Oracle’s 2004 acquisition of PeopleSoft.

Further, it has long been the desire of several PLM companies to combine with ERP, while ERP companies have consistently eschewed the possibilities despite the clear issues with BOM resolution (see www.merger.com/BOM). Will SCM be the lynchpin for change? Will we see a mass merge of SCM with ERP or PLM companies (including movement in the larger public companies) and will we see further consolidation of ERP and PLM forming massive Manufacturing Automation companies as overlaps continue to increase? I say yes.  What do you think?