On July 26, Bentley Systems Inc. completed a $32-million purchase of Rebis Industrial Workgroup Software, whose plant design and management products are engineered to integrate with the CAD products of both Bentley and its rival, Autodesk Inc.

Greg Bentley, CEO of Exton, Pa.-based Bentley, says his company welcomes "the opportunity to continue Rebis' commitment to deliver high-quality applications for both the MicroStation and AutoCAD platforms." He says users of Rebis' AutoPLANT solutions will benefit from Bentley's server-level products for content management and publishing, whether design data is in MicroStation's DGN or AutoCAD's DWG file formats.

"This acquisition holds great promise to bring together the historically incompatible installed bases of DGN and DWG engineering applications and content in the plant creation industry," commented industry observer Charles Foundyller, CEO of Daratech Inc., a market research and technology assessment firm in Cambridge, Mass.

Rebis, of Walnut Creek, Calif., has more than 100 employees and annual revenue of approximately $16 million. Jeffrey Hollings, former Rebis CEO and president, is now senior vice president of plant software at Bentley.

Bentley bought its initial 12.5% stake of Rebis in January, and in late April, stated its intention to use anticipated proceeds from an initial public offering to conclude the deal (ENR 5/6 p. 23).

The IPO has been registered, but not activated, and Bentley officials remain in a period of restricted comment. However, a Bentley spokeswoman says the "present inclination is to defer the offering for more favorable software-IPO conditions." She adds that the reasons for the acquisition "remained compelling for both companies," so Bentley concluded the deal without waiting for the IPO. She also says the looming prospect of tougher corporate regulations has not dampened enthusiasm for going public.