Dassault Systèmes has managed to achieve the seemingly impossible — consistent growth for three decades, even through economic uncertainty. The company did this with the help of high-quality business data and solutions from Dun & Bradstreet.
3DEXPERIENCE® is Dassault’s flagship 3D design and modeling platform is used across a wide swath of industries and projects, including those tackling some of humanity’s most significant sustainability challenges. The software helps companies envision in 3D the entire life cycle of products and has been used in design projects as wide ranging as ultra-high-speed transportation, space exploration modules, nuclear fusion research, and bioscience, even development of the COVID-19 vaccine.
Based in France but with operations around the globe, Dassault Systèmes is an offshoot of Dassault Group and began by offering aviation design software. Over time, the company saw a growth path in product life cycle management and then web applications. As of June 2023, the company had more than 22,000 employees globally, €5.7 billion (US$6 billion+) in annual revenue, and saw over 9% growth in 2022, as well as earning a AAA “Leader” rating from MSCI ESG in the software category and fourth-best company in the software sector in the Dow Jones Sustainability Indices.
Needing to Find New Opportunities for Growth
Initially, Dassault relied on other companies to sell their solutions, but that wasn’t yielding the kind of growth it knew it could achieve. New avenues of opportunity and new channels for sales were needed — and additional data and insights was recognized as a need to drive growth. The company also wanted to stay on top of potential threats in the market with deep data about competitors.
The company quickly saw what it needed in Dun & Bradstreet.
“Dun & Bradstreet was the one with the most data,” said Donald Moore, North America Sales Operations Excellence Expert for Dassault Systèmes. Moore recommended that the company use Dun & Bradstreet data and the D&B Hoovers™ sales intelligence solution to find and take advantage of white spaces in their market. The relationship is still going strong nearly 30 years later.
Finding New Opportunities with Dun & Bradstreet Data and D&B Hoovers
To better understand and target their ideal customer profile, Dassault started with extensive customer data (from sources such as web traffic, purchase history, marketing and sales outreach and more), combining it with B2B data from the Dun & Bradstreet Data Cloud to add missing information and structure the data around the
Dun & Bradstreet D-U-N-S® Number (a unique identifier that can be used to verify the identity of a business and aid in data management). This allowed Dassault to “see the data we don’t have,” in Moore’s words. Some examples of new insights include connections between companies (e.g., corporate hierarchies) and views into a potential prospect’s growth potential.
Dassault was then able to bring this enriched data into D&B Hoovers and analyze it to understand their Ideal Customer Profile and total addressable market, so it could more confidently and quickly know where to hunt for new customers. Applying the robust filters in the platform helped Dassault target their ideal customers based on company size, industry, location, revenue, and employee count.
Contact information in D&B Hoovers allowed the company to find decision-makers as well as understand likely buying groups at target accounts. Dassault took advantage of newer D&B Hoover’s capabilities as the product advanced. For example, layering in intent data when that became available helped identify when potential customers were in-market for the company’s solutions — or their competitors’ solutions — allowing the sales team to focus on highest propensity prospects.
Advanced indicators available in D&B Hoovers, such as Growth Trajectory and Spend Capacity, helped sales further prioritize companies with buying power and avoid deals less likely to close. Company and market research available in D&B Hoovers helped Dassault see where it could capitalize on market trends and unmet needs with differentiated offerings, allowing it to realize and sustain the growth it had envisioned while also working more efficiently.
Additionally, because Dassault contracts with governments, it has to be cautious about with whom it does business and in which countries. So, validating customer data to make sure companies were identified properly and verifying none were in blacklisted countries was critical to the company. Being able to verify company data meant an 87% reduction in the number of company records needing a manual check for corporate identity and location, delivering the company time and cost savings associated with staying compliant to relevant regulations.
Over time, Dassault transition from batch file access to Dun & Bradstreet data to the D&B Direct API, allowing the company to access Dun & Bradstreet data directly for use in their workflows and internal systems.
Moore said the relationship Dassault has maintained with Dun & Bradstreet and the exemplary service provided over three decades have been instrumental to the company’s sustained ability to grow.
“Dun & Bradstreet is deeply embedded in the core of our operations,” Moore said. “Everyone is top notch. They come with innovative solutions to solve problems and really teach you how to use the tool. It’s all about the people.”
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