Wireless and GPS solutions company Trimble anounced April 26 that it will acquire the popular SketchUp 3D modeling platform from Google in a deal expected to close in the second quarter of 2012.
Google developed SketchUp with the vision of providing “3D modeling for everyone” and the software allows users to design, model and visualize various projects. Since the product’s debut in 2007, the platform has attracted millions of users each year, ranging from architects to engineering and construction firms to building and design professionals.
Trimble vice president Bryn Fosburgh said SketchUP will “provide an important element” of the company’s long term strategy.
“Trimble has already created the de-facto standard for field data models and project management tools for our key markets,” he said in a statement. “…The combined capability will enhance our ability to extend our existing market applications including the cadastral, heavy civil, and building and construction industries.”
As part of the deal, Trimble will partner with Google on running and further developing SketchUp’s online 3D Warehouse, a database of more than 2 million models where users can find and collaborate on 3D models created by others and share their own.
Google will continue to host and operate 3D Wareouse for Trimble and the two will partner in continuing to support the same capabilities and functions 3D Warehouse offers today. For instance, the ability for users to submit 3D buildings to be published to Google Earth will remain.
Fosburgh noted that Trimble will continue to allow third-party developers along with the company’s distribution partners to develop new applications for SketchUp.
“SketchUp, together with these existing capabilities, will provide a stand-alone and enterprise solution that will enable an integrated and seamless workflow to reduce rework and improve productivity for the customer,” Fosburgh said.