AMS Spring 2023

Essentium Names New Executives As 3D Printing Industry Shakes up Managing Roles

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In the last months, a growing number of additive manufacturing (AM) companies have announced adding new top-level executives and board members to their teams to meet set business goals and growing demand. From GE Additive to construction 3D printing startup Mighty Buildings, new names continue to emerge amid a global economic slowdown that has contributed to record-breaking layoffs in the first weeks of 2023.

This week alone, we learned that Essentium has appointed Edna Garcia as Chief Financial Officer (CFO) and Will Chiang as Chief Operations Officer (COO). At the same time, Velo3D (NYSE: VLD) hired Robin Stamp as the new director of solutions engineering, and Carbon recruited healthcare industry expert Terri Capriolo as the senior vice president of its oral health division. Additionally, additive metals company 6K has taken on Dennis Fehr as chief financial officer of 6K and Rob Davies as chief operating officer of 6K Energy.

Company Roadmap

2022 was a whirlwind year for 3D printing manufacturer Essentium. After announcing a merger with a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC) to go public at the end of 2021, it backed out of the deal. Attributing the decision to “market conditions” that prevented the parties from consummating the agreement, Essentium was one of many companies that opted out of a SPAC merger deal in early 2022. SPACs were all the rage in 2021 before rising inflation, more regulation by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), and the threat of a recession led investors to lose interest in this type of operation.

On top of that, Essentium’s plans for rapid expansion also suffered from the falling out with the SPAC company. As a result, Essentium lost a deal with Collider, a startup that officially came out of stealth mode in 2016 with its hybrid Programmable Tooling technology and Orchid 3D printer. The transaction was expected to close in the first quarter of 2022, but that never happened.

Despite these setbacks, Essentium continues to pursue innovative 3D printing techniques and an expansion strategy through a new on-demand service offering starting in 2023. The company, which initially started as a provider of polymer materials, introduced its high speed extrusion (HSE) additive manufacturing system at RAPID + TCT 2018 and has since deployed it to customers like the Maine Air National Guard, the U.S. Air Force, Axle Box, and Wichita State University.

Essentium appoints Edna Garcia as Chief Financial Officer (CFO) and Will Chiang as Chief Operations Officer (COO). Image courtesy of Essentium.

The company’s new executive appointments, Garcia and Chiang, are expected to lead its commercial and operational mission and oversee new key strategic initiatives to fuel AM’s continued growth and value, stated Essentium.

As CFO, Garcia will lead Essentium’s global finance organization and financial activities to accelerate growth and execute the company’s strategic plan of enabling an open AM ecosystem. At the same time, Chiang’s new role as COO will see him building global operations for Essentium’s customers.

Speaking about the new additions to the team, Essentium CEO Blake Teipel indicated that “Edna [Garcia] and Will [Chiang] are seasoned executives with an exemplary track record of driving operational and financial performance. Their experience, discipline, and performance-driven leadership will be instrumental in executing our strategy and driving long-term value for our customers. I look forward to working with them to achieve our next wave of accelerated growth in the AM industry.”

Competitive Skills

As the 3D printing industry keeps growing, other companies are also moving to hire new executives. A week ago, Velo3D announced the appointment of Robin Stamp as Director of Solutions Engineering to help grow the adoption of the firm’s metal AM technology with new customers and in new industries. In his role, Stamp will oversee the development of new standards with regulatory agencies, the qualification of new metal alloys for use in the Sapphire family of printers, and the collaboration with partners and agencies.

A former SpaceX engineer and senior manager at Stryker, Stamp has been leading teams in additive manufacturing processes for over a decade. Aside from his degrees in aeronautical engineering, the expert received his doctoral degree in additive manufacturing for medical devices from the University of Liverpool in 2007.

Commenting on his new role, Stamp said, “since I first operated a Velo3D Sapphire printer, I realized the technology was a cut above the rest in terms of its print capabilities. I’m looking forward to working more closely with Velo3D’s innovative technology, helping improve and develop products, and enabling new customers.”

Another new addition to the industry is Capriolo, who joins Carbon as the senior vice president of the brand’s oral health division. Reporting directly to the Office of the CEO, Capriolo has expressed her respect for the brand’s innovative spirit, proven results, and focus on customer success. After 20 years of sales and leadership experience at healthcare businesses like National Dentex and Straumann, her strong relationships with dental labs could benefit the growth of Carbon’s Oral Health business.

At 6K, Fehr and Davies have been brought on to help guide the company forward in terms of future investments, mergers and acquisitions, growth, and overall “operational prowess.” As CFO of Fluence Energy, Fehr was able to grow the company’s revenue from just $30 million in 2018 to $1.2 billion in 2022, while expanding the organization to 10 regional entities around the world. Meanwhile, Davies worked for 10 years at Cabot Corporation, where he oversaw 18 carbon black plants and chaired the firm’s Manufacturing Council. He will be taking charge of 6K Energy’s manufacturing expansion, which includes full scale PlusCAM cathode material production beginning in 2025, driven by $50 million in funding from the Department of Energy.

Velo3D is the Diamond Sponsor of the Additive Manufacturing Strategies summit beginning February 7 through 9, 2023, in New York, where visitors will be able to hear from Velo3D CEO and Founder Benny Buller during the “Main Conference Keynote” speech on February 7 at 9:10 AM ET. Register for the event here.

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