Business speak can read somewhat like poetry: A “formal alliance between two commercial enterprises, usually formalized by one or more business contracts but falls short of forming a legal partnership or, agency, or corporate affiliate relationship” becomes a “Global Strategic Partnership.” And those are exactly the vows that ZVerse and 3D Systems have taken, according to their announcement this morning. While a partnership would include the actual binding of the two companies to each other, a ‘strategic’ partnership just means that they will be working together for each company’s benefit without dismantling their separate natures.
In this case, the benefits that these companies bring to each other are quite clear.
ZVerse, founded in 2013 and based out of Columbia, SC, is a company dedicated to the development of 3D content and production applications for 3D printing. One of their primary areas of production is in the area of full color sports memorabilia and they maintain the world’s largest officially licensed 3D printable content library for the sports industry.
3D Systems has a long and storied history in the 3D printing industry, beginning in 1989 with the invention and commercialization of its Stereolithography printer. Providing advanced and comprehensive 3D digital design and fabrication services, it continues to push the frontiers of 3D printing through inventions such as MulitJet Printing (MJP) and Virtual Surgical Simulation (VSS).
A primary area for partnership for the two companies is in the development of Zverse’s patent pending technology that promises to produce 3D printed products in full color that are high gloss and moisture resistant. Chief Product Officer of 3D Systems, Rajeev Kulkarni, expressed his company’s enthusiasm for the newly formed partnership:
“We are pleased to partner with ZVerse, combining our technology and engineering expertise with their deep experience in application development and content creation to advance full color 3D printing. We are excited to leverage their process know-how and expansive distribution network to expand content and coverage for our Photobooth technology as well.”
3D Systems innovative Photobooth technology allows a person to have a full scan performed in seconds and then converted into a full color 3D printed figurine. This invention was introduced in November of 2014 at Euromold in Frankfurt, Germany and has held the public’s attention ever since. This newly announced partnership between 3D Systems and ZVerse will facilitate their collaboration on the development and marketing of the Photobooth technology using ZVerse’s licensed content and distribution channels.
The announcement of this partnership comes on the heels of ZVerse’s closure on a $3.5 million Series A funding round with Mosely Ventures. That funding will be dedicated toward advancing their position in the production of licensed content as well as to commercialize LAYR their proprietary B2B 3D content creation platform. CEO and Co-Founder of ZVerse, John Carrington, explained the benefits of this newly announced partnership:
“The strategic relationship with 3D Systems and the completion of our Series A funding gives ZVerse the resources and expertise to continue our leadership position in the full color 3D printed content arena. Additionally, we are seeing strong inbound demand for our underlying 3D content creation and management platform for 3D printing, LAYR. We look forward to exploring this opportunity as well as our direct-to-consumer model with major brands.”
As they say, what’s good for the goose is good for the gander. In other words, the two companies will be working together to bring even more advanced full color 3D printing technology to even more people through even more products. Let us know what you think of this deal in the ZVerse / 3D Systems forum thread on 3DPB.com.