AMS Spring 2023

CORE Acquires GoProto 3D Printing Service

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CORE Industrial Partners, the Chicago-based private equity firm, announced that RE3DTECH, a 3D printing service bureau in its portfolio, has acquired GoProto, a 3D printing service bureau in San Diego. CORE, which specializes in funding advanced manufacturing businesses, acquired RE3DTECH earlier this year.

In a press release, Matthew Puglisi, a partner at CORE, said, “The acquisition of GoProto brings a large base of industry-leading customers, deep manufacturing expertise and a talented leadership team. Notably, the company’s extensive in-house multi-jet fusion offering is uniquely suited to serve the expanding market for higher-volume additive production. We’re excited to leverage CORE’s sector experience as we partner with management and work to expand the platform.”

In an interview with 3DPrint.com’s Sarah Saunders from December, 2021, CORE’s founder and managing partner, John May, said the company had acquired almost 20 additive manufacturing (AM) companies. The interview took place just before the company purchased RE3DTECH, so, between RE3DTECH and GoProto, it seems fair to estimate that number is now at about 20. Given that it was bought by RE3DTECH, GoProto will likely be absorbed into the company.

In the interview from last December, May also noted that many of the company’s AM acquisitions have been “integrated” into the platform of one of those acquisitions, Fathom. A rapid prototyping services bureau, Fathom itself has acquired 13 companies over the last few years, according to May. So, it’s unclear at this point if RE3DTECH and GoProto will continue to operate separately from CORE’s other purchases, or if they will also end up integrated into Fathom.

Fathom has 12 sites nationwide: half in the Midwest, with the other half scattered along both coasts, as well as Texas. While Fathom has one location already in the Bay Area, it is as yet unrepresented in Southern California. The fact that GoProto’s headquarters are in San Diego could be one motivating factor behind the acquisition, and could also suggest the likelihood that GoProto will be brought into the Fathom fold.

In addition, GoProto has a network around the country. Along with Southern California, GoProto has reach in a few other major regions where Fathom currently doesn’t operate, including the Pacific Northwest and the Carolinas. Finally, GoProto is also heavy in the Midwest, which — again, if the company is merged with Fathom — further solidifies CORE’s presence in the heartland of America’s auto industry.

Certainly, there are many unknowns here, but one thing is clear: CORE has a plan. There’s no way to tell yet the extent to which the plan will succeed, but it does seem to bode well for the sector, as a whole, that there seems to be such an urgently pressing incentive behind consolidating a nationwide network of AM service bureaus.

Images courtesy of GoProto

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