GE is leading the way in the trend toward every company becoming a software and cloud company. The old-line manufacturer of train locomotives and jet engines is transforming itself, using Internet of Things, software and the cloud to service those machines, creating additional value for its industrial customers -- and revenue for itself.
In the latest step in that direction, GE Digital announced it has acquired ServiceMax, which provides cloud-based field service management solutions. The $915 million deal is expected to close in January. The acquisition provides GE Digital with enhanced capabilities for is IoT vision, which it calls "industrial Internet," the company said in a statement.
GE had previously used Service Max for internal productivity; with the acquisition, GE plans to add analytics and insights to ServiceMax logistics, workforce optimization and deployment. GE expects it can prove service productivity by $25 billion using analytics, combining ServiceMax with GE's own Predix IoT operating system.
ServiceMax services include inventory and parts logistics, scheduling and workforce optimization.
Service revenue is "the bulk of our earnings and is a key part of what makes us successful," Bill Ruh, chief executive officer of GE Digital, told Bloomberg. "We're moving away from where it's all on paper to where it's all becoming fully automated. Services are becoming a key part of the digital economy."
GE established GE Digital last year on the outskirts of Silicon Valley; the company has said it may be a $15 billion business by 2020, according to Bloomberg.
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— Mitch Wagner, , Editor, Light Reading Enterprise Cloud