Currently, the waves of smart manufacturing are sweeping across the world. Digital transformation becomes a key focus point in different manufacturers around the globe. As a global industrial software provider with a history of nearly 40 years, how will QAD embrace the opportunities brought by the waves? How will QAD realize transformation and development for itself in the fierce market competition? With these questions, Dr. Pei Huang, e-works CEO interviewed Mr. Anton Chilton, QAD Chief and Global Field Operation. Anton analyzed the influence of transformation on manufacturing and software industry and shared QAD’s latest development in technology and business. Mr. Jay Cao, QAD Greater China Vice President joined the interview.
With the upsurge of Industry 4.0, advanced technologies like Internet of Things, artificial intelligence, and machine learning are in a full swing these years. Anton believes that with more and more manufacturers start to embrace the Industry 4.0 they will realize the digital transformation in next few years.
He pointed out that the paste of change like autonomous vehicle and new energy technology will change the nature of automotive industry dramatically in the next 5-10 years and internal combustion engines will get out of the market in the future. Compared to 5 years ago, digital transformation companies looking at more integrated cloud applications than point solutions. This requires software industry to adapt to requirements quickly and offer more choice of deployment for customers. However, many large projects often take years to run. This traditional model cannot be able to rapidly respond to industry changes. Customers always expect their software to roll out fast and can respond to changes. In recent years, QAD’s transformation to cloud makes it an industry pioneer and wins a more favorable position in competition. Relying on more flexible and cost-effective solutions, QAD have acquired many large organization customers globally.
According to Anton, in the last few years QAD’s focus is cloud ERP business. They are converting customers from on-premise to cloud which means from revenue perspective, moving from license sales at big chunks of money to a steady growth of subscription. That has made QAD look flat for the couple of years. Now on the one hand, QAD is converting more and more customers, on the other hand they are also starting to look at more and more new business. Their cloud business continues to grow at least 35% every year. Now QAD has 23,000 cloud ERP users from 170 different customers in over 30 countries. In the near future of 2 to 3 years, their goal is to be able to be platform independent and select the most appropriate environment for customers based on the customers, locations, and specific needs. Geographically, QAD’s cloud business grows very aggressively in US market, which is followed by Europe, some parts of Asia Pacific, and Australia.