MKS Inc.

MKS Inc.
This article is about MKS Inc, the software vendor. For other uses, see MKS.
Type Public
Industry Computer software
Founded 1984
Headquarters Waterloo, Ontario, Canada
Key people Michael Harris[1]
Products MKS Integrity, MKS Implementer, MKS Toolkit
Employees 400 est. (2011)

MKS Inc was a multinational independent software vendor which became a wholly owned subsidiary of Parametric Technology Corporation on May 31, 2011 and is now operated as a business unit within PTC[2]. It is focused on the enterprise Application Lifecycle Management (ALM) market, which includes lifecycle management for applications, systems and software engineering with its process centric MKS Integrity platform.

MKS Integrity manages all systems and software development processes and connects all engineering artifacts, including requirements, models, code and test, ensuring comprehensive lifecycle traceability. MKS Integrity's open architecture integrates disparate tools into a streamlined engineering process, allowing orchestration of engineering change and collaboration across the technology supply chain with a single solution, single repository approach. By introducing this approach, the company believes that with MKS Integrity, engineering teams improve productivity and quality, streamline compliance and gain complete product visibility, which ultimately drives more innovative products into the market.

MKS Integrity also provides complete ecosystem integration so that you can preserve your current investments in tools, suppliers and partners. Finally, MKS Integrity offers enterprise-wide value whereby organizations will achieve real-time release readiness metrics and reporting; will have support of a variety of development methodologies/technologies; and, achieve scalability to all sizes of the enterprise.

MKS works with customers who are looking to manage development of software intensive products, as well as, those who have compliance initiatives, or are adopting regulatory controls such as ISO 26262, DO-178B/C and ISO and IEC standards as well as FDA and CE Mark Regulatory Requirements.

MKS also offers Implementer, a change control system for the IBM i operating system available under the MKS Integrity ALM banner; MKS Toolkit which provides interoperability and source code portability between UNIX, Linux and Windows; MKS X/Server, and a commercial version of Lex & Yacc.

MKS is headquartered in Waterloo, Ontario, Canada and has 372 employees as of March 10, 2011. With additional offices in the United States, the United Kingdom, Germany, Singapore and Japan MKS supports customers[3] across these four core industries: Automotive, Aerospace & Defense, High Tech Electronics and Medical Devices which includes many global 1,000 organizations, worldwide.

MKS conducts research and development in Waterloo, Ontario, benefiting from the company's close proximity to the University of Waterloo and its world renowned math and computer sciences program and its co-op placement program as well as other post secondary educational institutions like Wilfrid Laurier University, Conestoga College and University of Guelph.



The early years 1984–2000: inception, interoperability and going public

Previously named Mortice Kern Systems, MKS was founded in 1984 by four University of Waterloo students, Randall Howard, Alex White, Trevor Thompson and Steve Izma. The company, founded initially as a consulting group, delivered to market its first product, MKS Toolkit, in 1985.

In 1987, MKS stepped into the version control market with a product called MKS RCS, which was renamed to MKS Source Integrity in 1992, deciding at that time to put strategic emphasis and focus expansion on the software configuration management marketplace, a segment of what is now known as ALM.

In 1997 MKS began development of a new, more scalable enterprise version management system that formed the underlying architecture of the MKS Integrity ALM product offered today. This initiative was further realized in 1999 when MKS invested the bulk of its R&D efforts towards re-designing MKS Source Integrity as a multi-tier Java EE platform to address the needs of large enterprise installations.

In 1998 MKS purchased the Implementer product and division of Silvon Software, based out of Chicago, Illinois, to add AS/400 support to its ALM product line. Continuing with acquisitions, in 1999 the Interoperability Business Unit merged with DataFocus Inc., a long time OEM partner, and was charged with the evolution of the MKS Toolkit and NuTCRACKER products.

In the 1999–2000 timeframe, the company also embarked on a web content management strategy with the launch of a product called Web Integrity. This precipitated a spin off strategy, resulting in the formation of a company called Vertical Sky. This short-lived venture was not successful, and the company abandoned its content management product and regrouped and rebuilt under the MKS brand name in 2001.

2001–2008: The rise of application lifecycle management

In 2001, following the company's restructuring and refinancing, MKS shifted its primary focus to the enterprise market, expanding from its desktop-based version control and defect tracking system to the multi-tier software change and configuration management (SCM) system it had been developing technically since 1997. The new product, now known as MKS Integrity, had a Java EE foundation and was brought to market in June, 2001. Since that time, the company has expanded feature sets beyond SCM, into what is now called in the marketplace, Application Lifecycle Management (ALM), with the incorporation of requirements management and release management in 2005, and test management and portfolio management in 2006. As of 2006, the ALM revenues for the company constitute over 80% of the annual revenues (MKS Inc. (2006-06-07). "MKS Announces Record Revenue and Earnings for Fiscal 2006" (Press release). MKS Inc.. Retrieved 2006-11-08. ).

In late 2005 MKS opened an office in Japan where the company began to offer local service and support for their customer base in countries such as Australia, China, Japan, Korea and Singapore.

By October 2006, the Interoperability Division of MKS announced the release of MKS X/Server - technology, SCO XVision Eclipse and the SCO Wintif, that was rebranded after being acquired from SCO.

In 2001 Philip C. Deck, join the company and was appointed CEO. Shortly after, Michael W. Harris, joined and was appointed President and COO in July 2002, and Douglas Sawatzky, formerly VP Finance, as Chief Financial Officer in February, 2006.

Throughout 2006-2008 MKS was recognized by industry analysts and PR firms as a strong contender in the ALM market and continued to receive industry accolades for its strong technical offerings:

  • Company Recognized by SD Times as an Innovation Leader for Fourth Straight Year[4]
  • In 2008 Forrester proclaims MKS as the leader in requirements management in the independent research report[5]
  • MKS positioned in the 'Leaders' quadrant in Gartner's first ever Magic Quadrant for Software Change and Configuration Management (SCCM) for Distributed Platforms[6]
  • MKS positioned as an influential vendor in the ALM Vendor Report by independent analyst firm, Voke Inc.[7]

In late 2007 and early 2008 the company acted upon growing success in the embedded systems market and focused its strategy both in terms of sales and development on large global organizations in the automotive, aerospace/defense, medical device and mobile device sectors.

2009-Present: Consolidation of development markets

With the current industry focus the company is seeing the advanced product development organizations, those with a combination software and hardware focus, forcing the consolidation of the traditional product development and software development life-cycles.

The accolades continued for MKS Integrity with more from the analyst and PR firms:

  • Gartner positioned MKS as a leader in the 2009 Magic Quadrant for Software Change and Configuration Management (SCCM) for Distributed Platform[8]
  • Forrester named MKS as a leader in Agile development management tools in Forrester Research Inc., May 2010.[9]

In late 2009 Michael W. Harris was appointed as the company's President and CEO while Philip C. Deck was appointed Executive Chairman and continues his role as Chairman of the Board of Directors.[10]

August 23, 2010 Charlie Janes returns to MKS and is appointed Vice President of Sales for North America.

In September, 2010, Andrew M. Wertkin was appointed Chief Technology Officer (CTO).[11]

November 3, 2010, Michelle Dickey joined MKS as Vice President Federal Sales to spearhead a team for the North American Government market.

On May 31, 2011, MKS and PTC announced that PTC had completed the acquisition of MKS and MKS would be operated as a business division of PTC from now on[12].


MKS Products

Application Lifecycle Management

  • MKS Integrity - (Process and Workflow; Portfolio Management; Requirements Management; Software Change and Configuration Management; Release Management; Test Management; Defect Management; Modeling and Simulation; Agile development)
  • MKS Integrity for IBM i/Implementer

MKS Interoperability

  • MKS Toolkit for Developers
  • MKS Toolkit for Enterprise Developers
  • MKS Lex & Yacc
  • MKS X/Server
  • AlertCenter

See also


  1. ^ "Company Profile for MKS Inc (CA;MKX)".;MKX&page=quotesearch. Retrieved 2008-10-15. 
  2. ^ PTC (2011-05-31). "Open Letter to MKS Customers: PTC® Acquires MKS" (Press release). PTC. Retrieved 2011-09-16. 
  3. ^ "MKS Customers". Retrieved 2011-03-23. 
  4. ^ Software Development Times (2006-06-01). "MKS Hits a Home Run with SD Times - Company Recognized as an Innovation Leader for Fourth Straight Year" (Press release). SD Times. Retrieved 2010-06-03. 
  5. ^ Forrester Research Inc. (2008-05-31). "The Forrester Wave(tm): Requirements Management, Q2 2008" (Press release). Forrester Research Inc.. Retrieved 2010-06-02. 
  6. ^ Gartner Inc. (2008-01-28). "Magic Quadrant for Software Change and Configuration Management (SCCM) for Distributed Platforms" (Press release). Gartner Inc.. Retrieved 2010-06-03. 
  7. ^ Voke Inc. (2008-08-07). "MKS positioned as an influential vendor in the ALM Vendor Report by independent analyst firm, Voke Inc." (Press release). Voke Inc.. Retrieved 2010-06-03. 
  8. ^ Gartner Inc. (2009-04-23). "2009 Magic Quadrant for Software Change and Configuration Management (SCCM) for Distributed Platform" (Press release). Gartner Inc.. Retrieved 2010-06-03. 
  9. ^ Forrester Research Inc. (2010-05-13). "The Forrester Wave(TM): Agile Development Management Tools, Q2 2010" (Press release). Forrester Research Inc.. Retrieved 2010-06-03. 
  10. ^ "MKS Announces Changes to Leadership Structure". Retrieved 2009-11-24. 
  11. ^ "MKS Appoints New CTO to Further Extend Technology Leadership". Retrieved 2010-09-21. 
  12. ^ PTC (2011-05-31). "PTC Acquires MKS" (Press release). 

External links

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

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