Bentley Systems Inc., a family-owned Exton company that has been making construction software since the 1980s, says it has purchased E-on Software, an animation-systems maker based in Oregon that worked on popular movies such as Minions, The Hunger Games, and Avatar.
The deal includes E-on's software-development group, which works out of Paris. Bentley won't say what it paid.
Focusing for 20 years on entertainment, E-on lately collaborated with Bentley on applying animation software to help "architects and engineers . . . tell their story in a more compelling way" before Bentley made an offer, E-on founder and CEO Nicholas Phelps said in a statement. The deal puts "Hollywood movie quality into the hands of engineers," he said.
Bentley chief executive Greg Bentley called E-on's platforms "a mainstay among computer graphics professionals" and posted testimonies from E-on users at Comcast's Universal Pictures and other clients.
Bentley Systems has more than 3,000 employees and boasts global revenues of more than $600 million a year. The firm, which opened a Center City office to attract recent college graduates, says it has spent more than $1 billion since 2008 on research, development, and acquisitions such as E-on.
Two years ago, Axalta Corp.'s former owner, DuPont, closed its Marshall Laboratories on Grays Ferry Avenue, idling 265 workers. Now Axalta plans a smaller-scale return to South Philadelphia, with public and training assistance for its 190-person high-tech paint-research center at the Navy Yard.
Like the new Axalta plant, the old DuPont plant was a research and small-batch production facility. The site is now a University of Pennsylvania campus.
The former Marshall workers, some of them second- and third-generation DuPonters, had scattered: Some retired; some were laid off; some went to the Wilmington research center shared by DuPont and its spinoffs.
With Axalta moving worldwide R&D back to South Philly, some DuPont veterans should regain shorter commutes.
The job-application business may be the next hyperlocal software market to consolidate.
GatherDocs, a Philadelphia hiring-software firm that claims Villa stores, the Union League, and Kicks USA among its clients, says it has been acquired by Colorado-based human-resources software provider Efficient Hire L.L.C. The firms won't say what Efficient Hire paid.
It has moved gatherDocs senior developer TJ Robleto to its Littleton, Colo., headquarters. GatherDocs' Bruce Marable will be Efficient Hire's top marketing officer; he told me he's looking for three to five Philly-based sales and marketing staffers. GatherDocs CEO Alex King left to work as an M&A adviser.
"Applicant-tracking systems are great for organizing applications, but they only capture the small percentage of people" who apply and fit the job, Mahe Bayireddi, chief executive of Philadelphia-based Phenom People (formerly iMomentous), told me.
He says Phenom People's talent relationship marketing system also ranks candidates and markets employers. The firm employs 20 in Philadelphia and 50 in Hyderabad, India.