With so much growth across business ventures every day, we do our best to keep you apprised of all the latest business news in the 3D printing industry. For today’s latest round of 3D printing business announcements, we’ll start with some news from desktop 3D printing leader Ultimaker, which is continuing its global expansion thanks to some major funding from private equity firm NPM Capital, which will join Ultimaker founders Martijn Elserman, Erik de Bruijn, and Siert Wijnia as a major shareholder.
The firm, part of the family-owned multinational SHV Holdings, focuses on long-term investments in the Benelux market. Per this new agreement, NPM will invest an undisclosed but significant amount in order to provide growth capital to Ultimaker, which has been growing fast since it was first founded in 2011 and has offices in both the US and the Netherlands.
Ultimaker, which has been focusing on updating its 3D printing software strategy, is certainly an attractive investment opportunity for NPM – it’s led by an “impressive management team” in a rapidly growing market.
Thanks to the agreement, Ultimaker, which already has a worldwide distribution network selling its products in over 100 countries, will be able to invest in more sales, R&D, and marketing resources, as well as speed up its product development.
“Ultimaker fits in our strategy of investing in technology based growth platforms. We are impressed by Ultimaker’s leading market position and clear growth strategy. We believe Ultimaker has a sustainable competitive advantage stemming from its integrated platform of hardware, software, materials and support network,” said Bart Coopmans, the Managing Director of NPM Capital. “Together with a strong community, an ambitious team of professionals and a highly-committed leadership, Ultimaker is very well positioned for further growth. We really look forward to working closely together with the Ultimaker team on their fascinating journey.”
“I look forward to working with NPM Capital. They have a great and solid reputation as a committed longer term investor,” said Ultimaker CEO Jos Burger. “NPM Capital has a flexible investment horizon focused on long term value creation. The company is not driven by the need to make a rapid exit, which enables us to continue our growth at a pace that our markets require. With the additional funding and support from NPM Capital we now have the ability to accelerate innovation and further empower professionals worldwide with the tools and knowledge required for them to stay ahead in a rapidly changing business environment.”
The estimated global market for additive manufacturing is $7 billion, and is expected to grow exponentially over the next decade to a total of $70 billion. With this in mind, 3D metal printing specialist BeAM Machines, which manufactures industrial metal additive manufacturing machines in its home country of France and opened the North American Solutions Center for its US subsidiary in Cincinnati this winter, is also increasing its capital.
BeAM was established in Strasbourg in 2012, and 3DPrint.com has been following the innovative company, which is expected to hit €7.3 million at the close of 2017, as it continues to grow. The company introduced its industrial MOBILE and Magic 2.0 additive manufacturing systems, along with the more compact Modulo, at formnext last year; the 3D printers use Directed Energy Deposition (DED) technology to melt metal powders.The 13 private shareholders for the company decided to raise the capital by €1.6 million, bringing the overall total to over €8 million. It has other fundraisers planned for the future, and will soon be formalizing its presence in Singapore as well.
BeAM will be at formnext in Frankfurt next month with its Modulo printer; the five-axis Magic 2.0 is currently being installed at the University of Sheffield as part of the Henry Royce Institute.
“The real question is to choose the right partner in an environment where everyone is looking for: material manufacturers, machine vendors and customers who integrate these technologies into their processes.”
“The Magic 2.0 has a different set of capabilities to the other machines at the Sheffield MAPP site,” said Professor Iain Todd, the Director of MAPP. “It opens up a number of industrial research possibilities, in particular the creation of new alloys in-situ and the chance to combine multiple advanced technologies, and we are looking forward to working with it.”
Sharebot, an Italian manufacturer of professional 3D printers, also has some business news to share – it’s partnering with two new shareholders.
DMG Digital Enterprises GmbH, a German developer, manufacturer, and worldwide distributor of high-quality dental materials, and Dentalica S.P.A., an exclusive distributor of dental products in Italy, already distribute Sharebot’s 3Delux dental 3D printer, and will now join the company as partners.
DMG uses its operational and chemical excellence to develop and produce polymerizable resins, which will allow Sharebot to benefit from, and contribute to, the development of biocompatible resins, as well as other specialized 3D printing materials.
Dentalica developed a complete 3D printing dentistry workflow, including printers, biocompatible resins, and software for the dental field – this will assist Sharebot as it works to become a 3D printing leader.
The new resources that are resulting from these two partnerships will be used to strengthen the company’s brand, as well as used for R&D purposes.
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