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The 3D printing industry is growing briskly as more companies make the leap to enter the market. As per industry watchers, the 3D printing sector is expected to be worth over $30 billion by 2022. With a handful of companies dominating the industry, one of them is doing quite well.
Yes, we are talking about Shapeways, the New York-based 3D-printing marketplace which has its roots in Eindhoven, the Netherlands is growing incredibly fast. The company recently announced $30M (€24M) Series E led by Lux Capital. Reportedly, the other participants in this round also included Union Square Ventures, INKEF Capital, and Andreessen Horowitz all recommitting as earlier investors.
As per the company press release, the capital will be used to accelerate company growth and launch additional services to support Shapeways’ overall vision to become the complete end-to-end platform helping creators ‘design, make, and sell,’ regardless of 3D modeling experience. While Shapeways receives 140,000 uploads each month, the company plans to simultaneously laterally and vertically expand its current services, addressing both creative and business pain points for creators.
Printing in over 60 different materials and finishes, Shapeways has factories and offices in New York, the Netherlands, and partners around the globe. It is a spin-out of the lifestyle incubator of Royal Philips Electronics, and its investors include Union Square Ventures, Lux Capital, Andreessen Horowitz, INKEF Capital, Index Ventures, Hewlett Packard Ventures and Presidio Ventures.
Moving further ahead, Shapeways has some exciting expansion plans scheduled for the year 2018. Take a look at it below.
Design With Shapeways
The first program to come out of the expansion is ‘Design With Shapeways.’ The program aims to offer one-on-one support to creators at any stage of the 3D modeling process. It plans to support anyone with the spark of an idea or if they need help optimizing a file before production. With ‘Design With Shapeways,’ the company wants to help solve a key pain-point for creators looking to access the benefits of 3D printing without the technical 3D modeling know-how.
Spring & Wonder
Also, Shapeways has unveiled a new custom jewelry collection that will allow users to personalize the look, material, and design of each piece. The company claims this is the first of several in-house showcase brands to be announced this year with others planned across a wide range of product categories.
Accelerate the community
Adding further, the team is working on offering an end-to-end service that will help creators successfully scale into small businesses via Shapeways. Through brand development, website design, marketing support, merchandising, customer service, utilizing Shapeways as an outsourced production and integration into its management system and more, users can take advantage of Shapeways’ experiences to grow their own companies. Meanwhile, more details about the program will be released in the coming months.
Shapeways is a platform for consumer 3D printing service and has a community of over 1 million creators printing over 10 million products. The company supports these creators via its design tools and services, access to advanced production technology starting with 3D printing and services to build a business.
“Millions of people have brought their product ideas to life with Shapeways thanks to the company’s unparalleled 3D printing expertise, scale, and capability,” shared Zack Schildhorn, the partner at Lux Capital. “The plan is to put this product creation engine in the hands of millions more through more approachable and expansive services. Life-changing businesses will be built on this platform.”
“We’ve just hit our 10 millionth product printed but we are just getting started, there is so much more to do,” added Greg Kress, CEO of Shapeways. “We want to enable more creators to reach success and this will include supporting them through design services, manufacturing beyond just 3D printing and helping them create small businesses.”
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