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Dassault Systèmes has announced the launch of a new SOLIDWORKS for Entrepreneurs Program. Dassault Systèmes is formalizing the program, which will extend access to its SOLIDWORKS software platform to selected users for use in applications ranging from industrial design to 3D printing.

SOLIDWORKS for Entrepreneurs is a 3D development package that provides users with industry-standard tools for design, simulation, publishing, data analysis, and environmental impact assessment. The platform gives users tools for product development, and it gives startups low-cost tools to accelerate product development and save time and money. Startups, makerspaces, and innovators who are selected will receive free licenses and tools to drive their innovations into products. New programs like this could provide makers better access to industry-standard tools.

“SOLIDWORKS for Entrepreneurs will give early-stage businesses access to a complete license of the powerful 3D design applications that help millions of engineers and designers succeed through innovation,” Dassault Systèmes announced.

By 3dstudioUK (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

By 3dstudioUK

In order to be eligible, applicants and entrepreneurs must have references, a product and a business plan to be considered.  A representative at the company confirmed that applicants should have a corporation or equivalent (for-profit or nonprofit), and that Dassault Systèmes is working in close affiliation with the Fab-LAB foundation. The winning applicants can receive up to 10 licenses that will be active for 1 year. Applicants must have less than one million dollars in funding and revenue, propose a business plan, and provide references and a product design.

“Today’s Maker Movement is helping quickly convert concepts from independent engineers and designers into innovative, successful small businesses,” said Gian Paolo Bassi, the CEO of SOLIDWORKS. “The next generation of entrepreneur needs the proper business and product design and development tools to grow. The SOLIDWORKS for Entrepreneurs Program demonstrates our commitment to helping engineers bring their innovations and design concepts to reality by providing SOLIDWORKS’ full suite of capabilities to easily design and manufacture products quickly.”

The company notes that successful applicants will have access to an impressive array of support and technology, including:

  • SOLIDWORKS 3D CAD, SOLIDWORKS Simulation, and SOLIDWORKS Composer design tools
  • 10+ hours of free online learning with MySolidWorks.com
  • A kick-off call with the team from SOLIDWORKS for Entrepreneurs and Customer Marketing Program Manager
  • Co-marketing opportunities such as:
    • Speaking opportunities at SOLIDWORKS events
    • Promotion in SOLIDWORKS campaigns and social communities
  • SOLIDWORKS engineers and technical managers providing design guidance
  • Hundreds of white papers, videos, and feature articles

In their press release, Dassault Systèmes stated it has supported North American startups in years past by providing software licenses to incubators like MassChallenge, Diagnostics for All, Super Pedestrian, and Design that Matters. Through the press release and their YouTube channel, the company has outlined organizations and entrepreneur-innovators like James Roberts and Amos Winter.

SolidWorks

Roberts designed an inflatable incubator in Solidworks

Roberts used SOLIDWORKS to develop an inflatable incubator for disaster zones. The device normally costs £30,000; however, with SOLIDWORKS, he was able to reduce the cost to just £250.

“I believe my design helps solve this problem and could allow for certain children to gain a positive start in life, greatly decreasing the numbers of premature child deaths throughout refugee camps,” Roberts said of his invention.

Amos Winter is the founder of GRIT, a nonprofit to make wheelchairs capable of traversing unpaved roads in Africa. Like Roberts, Winter used SOLIDWORKS to create an innovative product for a humanitarian cause. By using a long leverage system, these wheelchair designs were modded to go over unpaved roads and rough terrain. Today, Winter continues to teach students about technologies that he used through GRIT.

These two innovators piloted projects that show what can be accomplished when entrepreneurs innovate with SOLIDWORKS. The SOLIDWORKS for Entrepreneurs program will provide winners with “the tools they need to launch their design dreams.”

Solidworks for Entrepeneurs, New Program Kicks Off at Dassault Systems

In order to apply for the program, applicants can apply on the program website (a $200 nonrefundable fee is required–80% of which will support the Rwanda High School Girls Scholarship Program) and find more information on the program FAQ.

Will you be applying? Let us know what your thoughts are about the new program in the SOLIDWORKS for Entrepreneurs Program forum thread over at 3DPB.com.

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