Finalists Named in 3D Printing Business Mentorship Contest

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3D-Printing-Banner-LongHusband and wife design experts Tom and Tracy Hazzard of Hazz Design Consulting say they’ve spent more than 20 years living and designing together, and with their What the FFF is Fused Filament Fabrication 3D Printing podcast, they spread the word about 3D printing design software, printers, tools, designs to print, new materials and 3D printing business strategies.

Tracy and Tom Hazzard

Tracy and Tom Hazzard

The pair interview a “who’s who” in 3D print design, and during their Ask Anything episodes, the couple answer questions and share their own tips, tools and resources for successful 3D printing.

Now they’ve announced the finalists in their WTFFF? 3D Printing Podcast Business Mentorship Competition, and each of those three finalists will have 30 minutes to pitch their business plans to Tom and Tracy via Skype.

Ultimately, one winner will be announced July 31, 2015, and the victor will receive $10,000 worth of 3D print business consulting services over a six-month period.whatthefff

Eduardo Martini of Brazil, Kelechi Ojinnaka of Nigeria, and Mike Williams of the United States were selected from entrants around the globe as the final three.

“We offered the competition partly because nothing like this was available when we were young design entrepreneurs. We had to figure out a lot by trial and error, or by leaning on family friends. There have been many things we might have handled differently had we had the benefit of someone else’s experience in the business,” says Tracy of the contest. “We also thought it was a great way to connect with our podcast audience and share our knowledge further.”

Martini, a physiotherapist personal trainer and pilates studio owner from Curitiba, Brazil, says he wants to launch a 3D printing custom gift business.cover170x170

“Imagine that you know a person for 20 years. Remember all the gifts you have given that person. Probably you are running out of options. With 3D printing, you can make many gifts, and you can add a message or a name, choose the size and color. You can bet that this is the most special gift this person will ever receive. I have thought of opening this business, but this is not my area of expertise,” Martini said. “As I listened to the podcast driving to my clients, I heard the opportunity of my life. Since Tom and Tracy were offering their expertise and mentorship, how could I not try?”

The Nigerian finalist, 28-year-old Kelechi Ojinnaka, developed his 3D printing business idea after recently opening Nigeria and West Africa’s first 3D printing service bureau.

“I came across the podcast from Tom and Hazz Design during my research into the U.S. industry. I found them to be very useful and followed the trail to their website and there it was – a 3D printing business mentorship competition,” Ojinnaka says. “Ever looking for such an opportunity to achieve my dream, I knew this was the deal and threw my hat into the ring.”

The last of the finalists, Michael Williams of Federalsburg, MD, is a Community Advocate for Shapeways and former houseware plastics designer. He hopes the input from the Hazzards will help him launch a makerspace in his home state.

“Nothing brings me more joy than holding something I’ve designed. Most consumers go to a store looking for something they need or want, not once thinking about how the things were made. But when someone does want to know how it’s made, they are shown the magic of the makerspace. That’s what I love to do, share the magic of making,” Williams says.

The Hazzards say they created the contest to assist anyone interested in building a 3D printing-based businesses, and submissions were accepted for 21 days through www.hazzdesign.com. The submissions for the contest were closed on July 3.

Which of these three proposals should win the WTFFF? 3D Printing Podcast Business Mentorship Competition? Let us know in the Mentorship Contest forum thread on 3DPB.com.

 

 

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