Feb 8, 2017 | By David
Personnel changes are happening at the top of California-based 3D software company Autodesk, which announced yesterday that CEO Carl Bass would be stepping down, along with two members of the board.
Bass, who has held the Chief Executive position for over a decade, will be departing as of February 8, but will continue to sit on the board, and has been nominated for re-election. He garnered some attention recently for speaking out against President Trump: in an interview with Pando Daily, the outbound CEO characterised Trump as ''somewhere between a dictator and a small business owner.'' These views towards Trump's policies and character might be representative of many Americans, but Bass went further on the record than others in his position have tended to do.
Non-executive chairman of the board Crawford Beveridge spoke appreciatively of Bass and the changes he had ushered in during his tenure: ‘‘Carl has always been a driven and passionate change agent for the company, and under his direction Autodesk has transformed from a 2D design company into the worldwide leader of 3D design and engineering software.’’
Bass was equally positive about his tenure at Autodesk, describing it as an "honor’’ to lead the company through an ''exciting period of growth and change.'' ''I'm very proud of everything we accomplished’’, he said, ''from both a business and technology perspective.'' He went on to assert his confidence about the future of the company, stating that ''Autodesk is poised for even greater success as it enters this next phase.''
Former Autodesk CEO Carl Bass
Autodesk board members Jeff Clarke and Scott Ferguson, who were appointed as part of a deal struck with new financial backers just under a year ago, are also set to resign. Both were initially nominated for their positions by activist investor Sachem Head Capital Management. Along with Eminence Capital, Sachem Head were agitating for change at the company and came to an agreement with Autodesk last March. They agreed to support the board and the company for a set period of time in a so-called standstill agreement. Under the terms of a new agreement that has been reached, their two nominees will leave Autodesk, but the standstill agreement is to remain in place until June 2018.
Multinational software giant Autodesk has been at the forefront of developments in the digital world ever since the release of AutoCAD, its flagship computer aided design (CAD) application, in 1982. The company's recent contributions to 3D technology have made the design phase much more accessible to the everyday user, with Autodesk 3D software available to users of every level.
Over the years, Autodesk's design products have been industry leaders, used in major civil engineering projects such as New York’s Freedom Tower, as well as the development of visual effects for such films as Avatar and Inception. In November 2010 the company established the Autodesk Consumer Product Group, which was intended to foster interest in 3D design and hopefully nurture a new wave of designers hungry for easier access to sophisticated software.
The Autodesk 123D Design tool was released in 2012 as part of this new project, allowing users interested in 3D technology to design and print their own models and prototypes without needing to learn complex CAD concepts. 123D Catch, another easy-to-use program created by the Autodesk Consumer Product Group project, gives users the ability to make 3D images of real objects using multiple photos taken on a smartphone instead of a complex 3D scanning device. More recently, the Netfabb software suite was acquired from its German startup firm, as Autodesk targeted the growing market of CAD professionals wanting to make prints of their work with limited knowledge of 3D technology.
Posted in 3D Software
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