BLT: A Pioneering Force in Chinese Metal 3D Printing

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In the rapidly evolving landscape of additive manufacturing (AM), Xi’an Bright Laser Technologies Co., Ltd. (BLT) has emerged as a trailblazer, offering comprehensive solutions for metal additive manufacturing technology. Established in July 2011, BLT has quickly risen to become a leading player in China’s metal laser powder bed fusion (LPBF) machine manufacturers and got its scale advantage in the domestic metal 3D printing market. BLT has more than 10 types of equipment models, and its shipment volume and market share are among the top in the domestic metal 3D printing equipment market. The company’s commitment to innovation, exceptional technological strength, and strategic market focus have paved the way for its impressive growth and success.

Who is BLT?

A leading provider of complete solutions for metal additive manufacturing technology in China, BLT provides users with a full range of metal AM and remanufacturing technology solutions, including equipment, printing services, raw materials, technical services, software, etc. With years of professional experience in metal AM, the company serves customers in industries such as aerospace, energy, medical, dentistry, industrial molds, and automobile manufacturing. BLT adheres to a user-centered and market-focused approach to help users achieve optimal design, reduce production costs, improve production efficiency, enhance product quality, and create value overall.

Advantages and Milestones

Pioneering Status

BLT is the first company listed on China’s Science and Technology Innovation Board, reinforcing its position as a leading industry player. The firm officially entered the A-share market on July 22, 2019, and was listed on the Science and Technology Innovation Board of the Shanghai Stock Exchange under the stock code 688333.

Technological Strength

BLT has been at the forefront of metal AM technology in China, with more than 397 independent intellectual property rights related to metal 3D printing. Additionally, the company has undertaken or participated in several “National Key R&D Programs – Additive Manufacturing and Laser Manufacturing Special Projects,” further showcasing its commitment to innovation and research.

Talented Workforce

The company boasts more than 1,300 employees, with R&D personnel accounting for around 30%. Of note, two individuals enjoy the prestigious Shaanxi Sanqin talent allowance, indicating the caliber of professionals working at BLT. Furthermore, the company’s R&D investment has accounted for about 15% of its operating income for three consecutive years, highlighting its dedication to continuous improvement and technological advancements.

Impressive Reputation

BLT has garnered several accolades and recognition for its contributions to the industry. It is recognized as a “National High-tech Enterprise” and operates the Metal Additive Manufacturing National and Local Joint Engineering Application Center. The company also holds the distinction of being a National Enterprise Technology Center and a Postdoctoral Research Workstation. Moreover, BLT has been the recipient of awards such as the Excellent Industrial Design Award of China’s First Industrial Design Exhibition and the first 3D Printing Award.

Customers

In addition, BLT has established a solid reputation with an impressive list of esteemed customers and partners. Among its main customers are various subsidiaries of renowned aerospace giants, including China Aviation Industry Corporation, China Aerospace Science and Industry Corporation, and China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation. Moreover, the company serves as a trusted supplier of metal additive manufacturing services for Airbus, a prominent player in the global aviation industry.

A testament to its technological prowess, BLT entered into a groundbreaking joint development agreement with Airbus in August 2018. This landmark collaboration focused on metal 3D printing of large precision parts for the A350 aircraft. The successful partnership not only showcased BLT’s world-class expertise in metal 3D printing technology and production capacity but also highlighted their proficiency in printing large precision complex parts.

Furthermore, BLT’s customer base is extending beyond the aerospace sector. Notable clients include China Energy Group, China National Nuclear Corporation, China Shipbuilding Heavy Industry Corporation, various scientific research institutions, and universities. These diverse partnerships signify BLT’s commitment to providing cutting-edge metal additive manufacturing solutions across industries, solidifying its position as a pioneering force in the field.

(Data source: Nanjixiong)

BLT’s 2023 Semi-Annual Performance

On July 29, 2023, BLT disclosed its performance forecast for the first half of 2023, revealing a remarkable turnaround compared to the previous year. The company anticipates achieving an operating income of approximately USD$61.5 million, representing a year-on-year increase of USD$22.8 million and an impressive growth of USD$40.7 million compared to the same period last year.

Moreover, BLT expects the net profit attributable to the owners of the parent company to be about USD$2.5 million, marking a substantial increase of USD$7.9 million compared to the same period last year. Remarkably, this transformation reflects a significant shift from losses to profits year-on-year.

Additionally, after deducting non-recurring gains and losses, the estimated net profit attributable to the owners of the parent company is about USD$96,600, reflecting a substantial increase of USD$8.4 million compared to the same period last year and indicating another impressive turnaround in profitability.

Growth and Expansion

On May 12, 2023, BLT achieved a significant milestone with the successful production and acceptance of the BLT-S815, the 1,000th metal LPBF machine manufactured by the company. This achievement marks a testament to BLT’s prowess in the metal AM industry and its ability to meet the increasing demand for advanced 3D printing technology.

Since its first equipment model, BLT-S300, was released at the 10th China Air Show in November 2014, BLT has been on a path of consistent growth and success. Over the past ten years, the company has developed and delivered more than ten equipment models, culminating in 1,000 SLM equipment installations. BLT’s evolution from experimental research to large-scale production applications underscores its commitment to providing stable, efficient, and high-quality equipment.

The company’s growth trajectory is further substantiated by its continuous expansion efforts. BLT has constructed a new site spanning 163,200 square meters, dedicated to metal 3D printing powder production and custom metal parts manufacturing. This expansion aligns with BLT’s commitment to innovation and its vision of revolutionizing traditional manufacturing through design freedom, environmental friendliness, and enhanced efficiency.

According to the fixed increase plan released by BLT on August 29, 2022, the total planned fundraising will be USD$435 million for investing in large-scale intelligent production base projects for metal additive manufacturing and supplementary working capital. The large-scale intelligent production base is expected to further bolster BLT’s manufacturing capabilities and contribute to its growth trajectory.

Recruitment Initiatives

BLT’s commitment to talent development and retention is evident through its targeted campus recruitment projects like “Xintel” and the “Craftsman New Plan.” These initiatives aim to attract high-potential fresh graduates and skilled professionals across various disciplines, providing them with a mature workplace training system, growth opportunities, and competitive salary packages.

The company is actively seeking skilled professionals in domains such as 3D printing process engineering, machining process engineering, software development, marketing, project management, and more. BLT’s focus on attracting top talent underscores its determination to maintain a leading position in metal additive manufacturing technology and preserve its competitive edge in the industry.

Prospect and Outlook

BLT’s future outlook is undeniably promising, fueled by its projected revenue growth. According to estimates from Yahoo Finance, the company is poised to achieve remarkable milestones in the coming years. By 2023, BLT’s revenue is expected to surge to USD$196 million, reflecting an impressive 53% growth compared to the previous year. Looking even further ahead, in 2024, the company’s revenue is projected to scale up to an impressive $280 million USD, showcasing a remarkable growth rate of 43%. These figures underscore BLT’s capability to seize opportunities in the expanding global additive manufacturing market.

Furthermore, the positive outlook is further reinforced by several reputable securities institutions granting BLT a buy rating. Notably, Western Securities foresees the company’s operating income for 2023 to reach USD$199.8 million, with a net profit of USD$35.4 million, signifying a remarkable year-on-year increase of 218.24%. This affirmation from industry experts adds confidence to BLT’s potential and highlights its strong position for continued success in the metal additive manufacturing industry.

Financial Indicators2023E2024E2025E
Total Operating Income (million USD)199291387
Net Profit Attributable to Parent Company (million USD)355782
Earnings per Share (USD)0.220.360.51
Net Assets per Share (USD)1.61.962.47
Price-to-Earnings Ratio (PE)76.447.433
Price-to-Book Ratio (PB)10.68.66.9
ROE (%)15.120.123.1

(Data source: Nanjixiong, the figures have been self-converted from CNY to USD, based on the latest conversion rate 1 CNY = 0.14 USD)

BLT’s forward-looking approach extends to the development and adoption of new technologies in metal additive manufacturing. One of their notable developments is the BLT-S1000, a breakthrough 3D printing equipment that not only realizes ultra-large size build envelope of 1200mm×600mm×1500mm but also features synchronous scanning of 16 lasers, significantly improving forming efficiency. This cutting-edge equipment allows BLT to cater to the increasing demand for large-scale precision components in the aerospace field.

The company’s dedication to research and development is further exemplified in their focus on metal LPBF and laser stereoforming (LSF) technologies, as well as arc additive manufacturing technology (WAAM). BLT’s ongoing research in new superalloys and refractory metal tantalum-tungsten alloys for aerospace engines demonstrates their commitment to advancing the capabilities of additive manufacturing.

BLT’s efforts also extend to integrating digital, automated, and intelligent production management and control technologies, elevating manufacturing intelligence with the implementation of the smart factory project. This not only enhances collaborative operations and data integration but also sets a benchmark for intelligent manufacturing in the additive manufacturing technology industry.

With a strong vision for the future and a strategic roadmap for growth, BLT is poised to revolutionize traditional manufacturing processes, open up new opportunities across industries worldwide, and solidify its position as a key player in the global metal additive manufacturing market.

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