Additive Manufacturing Strategies

Trade Platform Alibaba Tours Winbo Smart Tech’s Impressive Facilities and Plans for a 3D Printing Future

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winboWhen we last checked in with Chinese 3D printer manufacturer Winbo Smart Tech, Ltd., they were reaching out to OEM clients with a special custom filament program. We followed this up-and-coming company regularly last year as they introduced their newest 3D printers, the already-popular Super Helper and Super Helper 3-in-1. Winbo is a 3D printing powerhouse, and with 15 printers on the market already, they’re forging ahead to continue building upon their solid foundation.

Winbo counts several high-profile, successful companies among their clients, and they’re always focused on building stronger relationships with their customers and partners. One of Winbo’s resellers is the massive global trade platform Alibaba, which sources and wholesales thousands of products from just about every industry in existence, from boats to shoes to baked goods. Recently, representatives from Alibaba visited Winbo’s giant Guangzhou-based headquarters for a facility tour and discussion on 3D printing.

About 50 managers from Alibaba attended the meeting, a four-hour long conference focused on the topic “Business Model and Philosophy.” After a brief welcome reception, the visitors toured the Winbo facility, which is, to put it mildly, huge – and filled with 3D printing from front to back. Even the corridor outside the main office is adorned with 3D printed touches, including a lamp, signs and office doorplates. From there, the group traveled into the Winbo showroom, where the company proudly displays their numerous 3D printers along with materials and 3D printed products.

A reception room is connected to the showroom, and it’s there that Winbo’s 3D printing capabilities are really evident, as most of the room’s furnishings are 3D printed. A desk, chair, chandelier, vase, and hangers were all created with Winbo’s 3D printing technology, which is capable of printing objects up to 915 x 610 x 1220 mm in one piece, thanks to their biggest printer, the Dragon XL.

The visitors then got to see the birthplace of Winbo’s dozen-plus 3D printers: the 3D printer production workshop, which is in almost constant motion. They also looked in on the Super Helper 3D Printer Test Workshop, which revealed how much work went into the creation and perfection of Winbo’s newest 3D printer. After that, they were shown the impressive staff facilities, which consist of eight multi-function halls used to conduct training, seminars, discussion forums, and other employee activities; and nine (yes, nine) staff lounges where Winbo’s hardworking employees can take breaks between churning out new printers and products.

showroomAlibaba’s visit wasn’t just for the purpose of marveling at Winbo’s impressive facilities, though. While Alibaba does a lot of business in 3D printer sales, they’re also interested in learning more about leveraging the technology within their own business operations. Winbo was happy to help their partner company explore 3D printing applications and discuss how Winbo 3D printers, in particular, could help Alibaba to cut costs, save time, and increase their overall competitiveness in the industry.

The “Business Model and Philosophy” presentation and discussion went on for about an hour and a half, as Winbo shared their business model and the story of how the company was built and achieved success. Winbo is serious about the term “philosophy,” too, citing the Analects of Confucius as a model for the company’s business plan.

Points highlighted by Winbo included the importance of constant learning for management, both about the technology and the customer base. Winbo also emphasized the value of staff ideas, as well as the importance of cross-referencing across multiple industries for research and development purposes.

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The Super Helper test workshop

The afternoon ended on a positive note, as the two companies exchanged networking information and discussed the possibility of working together in the future to further the development of the 3D printing industry. Winbo presented their guests with some 3D printed housewares as parting gifts, and Alibaba confirmed their intention to organize additional learning sessions with Winbo in the future – as well as their intention to pursue the technology further, using what they learned to advance their own business and the industry overall. Discuss in the Alibaba forum at 3DPB.com.

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