Dassault Systemes, a supplier of 3D and product lifecycle management (PLM) software, is to merge with collaborative PLM software firm MatrixOne.
PLM software is a suite of tools usually deployed in manufacturing companies to document and support the lifecycle of products.
It is also used to support product maintenance and is often integrated with ERP and computer aided design software.
According to analyst firm AMR, the major ERP companies have yet to produce products to match those of the three major independent PLM suppliers, Dassault Systemes, UGS and PTC.
The £235m deal will help Dassault to expand its roadmap to provide on-demand service-oriented products.
Bernard Charles, Dassault Systemes' president and chief executive, said, "We are clearly committed to enhancing the MatrixOne, Enovia and Smarteam products to serve the broad range of customers' demands."
The merger is seen by AMR Research as an indication that PLM can now be regarded as a mature technology.
In a paper about the merger, analysts Michael Burkett, Kevin O'Marah and Eric Karofsky said, "For customers of MatrixOne, this has to be good news. MatrixOne has long been highly regarded as core product data management software."
However, the analysts warned that Dassault Systemes' strength has been in heavy mechanical engineering, so users of MatrixOne's consumer products may need to band together to be heard.
MatrixOne users include GAP, General Electric, Johnson & Johnson, Procter & Gamble, Qualcomm, Sony, Boeing, BAE Systems and Porsche.