Electrochemical 3D Printing Startup Fabric8 Closes $50M Round

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Fabric8 Labs, a San Diego-based metal 3D printing startup, announced that the company has closed its Series B financing round. Led by venture capital firm New Enterprise Associates (NEA), the round of investment has delivered $50 million to Fabric8 Labs.

The company plans to deploy the new capital towards bringing its proprietary method of electrochemical additive manufacturing (ECAM) up to scale, a plan which includes the establishment of a pilot production facility. According to Fabric8 Labs, a key advantage to its ECAM process — which utilizes a water-based solution of dissolved metal ions as feedstock — is its potential to be rapidly scaled for mass production.

In addition to NEA, Intel Capital, the venture funding arm of the global chip giant, joined in the Series B round, along with the venture capital divisions of Schneider Electric (SE Ventures) and TDK (TDK Ventures). Fabric8 Labs has also received multiple investments from tech billionaire/TV personality Mark Cuban.

In a press release about the $50 million Series B financing round, Jennifer Ard, Intel Capital’s managing director, commented, “The potential of Fabric8Labs’ novel technology is undeniable and we believe ECAM is suited to support a wide range of applications across the electronics value chain. As the team works to scale their offerings, they’ll be able to deliver value across multiple business units for their customers, furthering their value-add.” Greg Papadopoulos, PhD., Venture Partner at NEA, added, “ECAM stands out as truly differentiated among the sea of approaches to additive manufacturing. You can avoid expensive post-processing, easily build complex things at micron-scale, print directly on your existing substrates, and do all of this at scale with, by far, the lowest energy – and thus carbon – footprint.”

Unsurprisingly given the roster of investors involved, Fabric8 Labs considers its target markets to be comprised of all aspects of electronics/chips supply chains. The company notes that its ECAM tech is ideal for printing pure copper, especially regarding applications where the metal has to be deposited onto temperature sensitive substrates.

Clearly, then, ECAM has great potential to rejuvenate all the manufacturing processes most negatively affected by supply chain disruptions over the last few years, since those disruptions always seem to lead back to chips. Moreover, the amenability of Fabric8 Labs’ tech to copper applications is particularly crucial right now: copper, specifically, seems to be the latest material to be fated for supply shortages and general volatility. This problem could get far more dire, the more quickly that demand in China rebounds as a result of the 2023 “reopening” of its economy.

Images courtesy of Fabric8 Labs

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