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3D Systems Corporation (DDD), ExOne Co (XONE)…This Company’s Plan to Print Big Margins Sends Shares Up 16%

Related tickers: 3D Systems Corporation (NYSE:DDD), ExOne Co (NASDAQ:XONE), Stratasys, Ltd. (NASDAQ:SSYS)

Although we don’t believe in timing the market or panicking over market movements, we do like to keep an eye on big changes — just in case they’re material to our investing thesis.

What: Shares of 3-D printing and services company ExOne Co (NASDAQ:XONE) ( soared as much as 15% after its CEO Kent Rockwell announced that his company was targeting gross margins of 50% within three years, according to a Reuters report.

So what: As part of the company’s plans to ramp up annual revenue output to $100 million, ExOne is planning to open three new production service centers this year: one in the U.S., one in Japan, and one in South America. ExOne Co (NASDAQ:XONE) plans to use the largely unmet 3-D needs of Asia and South America as its jumping-off point for rapid growth and its push toward 50% gross margins, putting it more in line with its peers Stratasys, Ltd. (NASDAQ:SSYS) and 3D Systems Corporation (NYSE:DDD) which both reported gross margins of 51% last quarter. However, Rockwell was also quick to note that ExOne Co (NASDAQ:XONE) is an industrial printing company through and through and has no desire to enter the consumer 3-D printing market. (Breathe a sigh of relief, 3D Systems Corporation (NYSE:DDD) shareholders!)

Now what: Again, these are ambitious plans for a company that’s made a grand total of 21 3-D printers in 12 quarters and turned its very first profit last quarter. I fail to see how expanding this quickly will go off without a hitch or without having expenses zap any chance of profits over the next few quarters. I don’t disagree with CEO Kent Rockwell that Asia and South America are regions of immense opportunity, but I’d be extremely cautious with a company still very wet behind the ears.

The article ExOne’s Plan to Print Big Margins Sends Shares Up 16% originally appeared on Fool.com.

Fool contributor Sean Williams has no material interest in any companies mentioned in this article. You can follow him on CAPS under the screen name TMFUltraLong, track every pick he makes under the screen name TrackUltraLong, and check him out on Twitter, where he goes by the handle @TMFUltraLong.The Motley Fool owns shares of and recommends 3D Systems and Stratasys and has short options on 3D Systems Corporation (NYSE:DDD).

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