Another 3D Printing Shakeup: Jonathan Jaglom Resigns as MakerBot CEO, Company President Nadav Goshen to Succeed Him
When I first met Jonathan Jaglom in person last spring, I quickly got the impression that the fast-talking CEO knew what he was talking about as he told me about changes at MakerBot and Thingiverse, with focus on listening to feedback from users and customers. This was good, as the prior year had been a tumultuous one for a company whose name was for a long time synonymous with desktop 3D printing. In April 2015, the company faced a 20% staff reduction and the closure of three retail locations; despite telling us his hopes to the contrary, just six months later a further 20% layoff followed, along with a move to a contract manufacturer. 2016 seemed to start on a more optimistic note, though in April of that year MakerBot moved all production to contract manufacturer Jabil, shutting down its New York assembly facility. Since that time, we have seen a sea change in the MakerBot business model, as the company shifted its focus officially in September 2016 from consumers to professional and educational users, rolling out new hardware, software, and materials solutions targeted at these users.
The reaction from within the company to the changing business model has been largely a roll-with-the-punches one, with long-time employees seeing a positive having emerged from the chaos.
“It had been a roller coaster,” Lauren Goglick, General Manager, North America, MakerBot told me at CES 2017 earlier this month at the downsized company booth. “Since Jonathan came on board, it’s been a smooth and steady ride. We know what our customers want. Creating solutions for the users actually using the printers has been the focus, really targeting these two user groups. There was a hype before about desktop 3D printing, it wasn’t just us.”
The reorganization and strategic shift MakerBot has seen under Jaglom have seemed to revitalize the company. With the change of focus in target users, MakerBot’s new sense of direction has been palpable as educational offerings and professional-grade hardware and materials have continued to emerge (and even the new Smart Extruder+ seems to be better-received than its rather disastrous predecessor).
Now, it seems that as MakerBot has shifted its priorities, so is Jaglom; he will be stepping down in order to spend more time with his family, returning to Israel.
“I joined MakerBot two years ago to lead the turnaround of the company and I’m proud of what we’ve been able to achieve in such a short time. We have defined a new strategic direction, completely revamped the company’s quality control processes, and successfully launched a new lineup of products. Having put the company on a new track and put in place a new organizational structure, I believe that now is the right time for me to step back and spend more time with my young family,” said Jaglom, who came to MakerBot from parent company Stratasys, where he had been the General Manager for Stratasys Asia Pacific.
Those within the company are not unaccustomed to chaos, and seem to be handling this transition with some grace, understanding the reasons for it. As Director of Public Relations Johan-Till Broer tells 3DPrint.com:
“Jonathan came to MakerBot from Stratasys to lead the company during a challenging phase, and he has driven significant operational and strategic change. He made a personal decision to leave the company. After working abroad for more than four years, Jonathan is looking forward to returning to Israel to spend more time with his family. He also believes that now is a good time for him to step back and let Nadav further refine and execute on the company’s vision. Nadav has a strong background in product development and growing digital ecosystems, which puts him in an excellent position to lead the company. The MakerBot team is looking forward to working with Nadav to further build out our 3D printing solutions for professionals and educators.”
For his part, successor Nadav Goshen seems ready to step into the role. Jaglom noted that “Goshen has been crucial in defining MakerBot’s new direction and he is the ideal candidate to lead the company on its new path.” Goshen has more than 15 years of experience in tech, with noted experience in “defining new products and business models, as well as growing digital ecosystems.” He has served in other executive positions throughout his career path, including as the CEO for “a fast growing ad-tech company” that should have him prepared to take on the mantle at the ever-dynamic helm of MakerBot.
“I’m excited to continue working towards our vision of putting a desktop 3D printer in every classroom and on the desk of every designer and engineer. MakerBot today is in a much stronger position and I would like to thank Jonathan for his contributions. I look forward to leading the company and continuing to build out our 3D printing solutions for professionals and educators,” Goshen said of the changeover.
His statement indicates an adherence to the strategy Jaglom has established in focusing on professional and educational users, which certainly bodes well following the product announcements made just a few months ago. It looks like the roller coaster that is MakerBot has just gone through another loop — and hopefully one that continues to excite its workforce and its customers, as we all keep an eye on this ever-evolving 3D printer manufacturer. Discuss in the MakerBot forum at 3DPB.com.[Photos: Sarah Goehrke for 3DPrint.com unless otherwise attributed]
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