It’s a big day for Formlabs, who will be presenting their webinar “How to Choose the Right 3D Printing Technology – FDM vs SLA vs SLS” later today at 1pm EST, right here on 3DPrint.com. (Have you registered yet? It’s free and there are prizes!) This morning, the SLA 3D printer manufacturer dropped some other big news, too: they’ve just landed some major investment money that will allow them to significantly expand their operations.
Formlabs has announced that they have successfully raised $35 million in Series B funding from venture capital firm Foundry Group and software giant Autodesk, more than doubling their previous investments and bringing the total to $55 million. (Existing investors in Formlabs include DFJ Growth, Pitango Venture Capital and Pascal Cagni.) The new funds will allow Formlabs to scale their operations to meet increasing customer demand, ramp up research and development, and further expand their reach in the market.
“Formlabs’ efforts over the years in introducing new materials and capabilities have defined the category of professional desktop 3D printing, resulting in significant growth for the company along the way,” said Max Lobovsky, co-founder and CEO of Formlabs. “With the new investment, we’re excited to develop more powerful tools to enable anyone working with 3D content to create remarkable things. Formlabs will continue to grow the stereolithography business and bring new tools to the world to advance our goal of making digital fabrication more powerful and accessible.”
Formlabs has already been having a phenomenal year; they’re currently shipping over 1,000 printers per month and have seen 100 percent growth in annual sales for the third year in a row. Their business was further bolstered earlier this year with the acquisition of Pinshape, and they recently opened a new office in Japan, bringing their employees up to more than 190 with offices in North America, Europe and Asia.
In terms of distribution, Formlabs’ reach currently extends across five continents thanks to their aggressive pursuit of international distribution partnerships. To help further grow the company’s global business, investor Cagni, founder of C4 Ventures and former head of Apple in Europe, will be signing on as a strategic advisor to help boost expansion efforts in the EMEA region.
Cagni isn’t the only big name to be joining the Formlabs team. Foundry Group co-founder Brad Feld, who also co-founded Techstars and whose investments include MakerBot and Fitbit, will be taking a position on the Formlabs board.
“From the moment of its founding, Formlabs saw the opportunity in making professional desktop 3D printing accessible and was a key pioneer in the category,” said Feld. “While the excitement and hype around consumer 3D printing has waned, the professional 3D printing category has had unabated demand, with Formlabs emerging as the leader in desktop 3D printing.”
In addition to their investment, Autodesk will also be forming a strategic partnership with Formlabs. The two companies will be collaborating on software integration and joint marketing initiatives.
“Formlabs has brought a lot of innovation and great execution to the desktop 3D printing market, and Autodesk is excited to invest in the company’s future,” said Carl Bass, CEO of Autodesk. “But even more importantly, we’re eager to work together to improve digital design and manufacturing for product designers everywhere.”
Thoughts on this latest round of investment funding within the 3D industry? Discuss further in the Formlabs Raises $25 Million forum over at 3DPB.com.
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