Stratasys, Ltd. (SSYS) Goes Mainstream with MakerBot

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After merging with Objet, a 3D printing company, Stratasys, Ltd. (NASDAQ:SSYS) is taking another bold move to acquire MakerBot

For the acquisition deal, Stratasys, Ltd. (NASDAQ:SSYS) will issue 4.76 million shares of its stock to exchange and acquire 100% of the outstanding capital stock of MakerBot, valued at $403 million as of June 19, 2013. MakerBot stakeholders will also receive additional compensation of up $201 million based on the price of Stratasys’ shares on June 19, 2013 through the end of 2014. The transaction is expected to close in the third quarter of 2013.

Stratasys, Ltd. (NASDAQ:SSYS)

Why MakerBot?

Unlike its major competitor 3D Systems Corporation (NYSE:DDD), which continues to expand its printing technology into all levels of use including personal, professional and production printing, Stratasys has been focusing on industrial clients prior to the acquisition of MakerBot.

As desktop 3D printers continue to evolve, their use among design and engineering professionals is growing rapidly. As more and more consumers adopt desktop 3D printers for a broad range of applications, Stratasys, Ltd. (NASDAQ:SSYS) and MakerBot estimate that the 35,000 to 40,000 desktop 3D printers sold in 2012 will double in 2013, driven by increasing digital 3D content and expanding accessibility and affordability. MakerBot is growing at an amazing speed, where its first quarter revenue of $11.5 million is not far away from its total revenue of $15.7 million for the previous year.

MakerBot’s desktop printers provide affordability and ease of use, which will translate into new growth opportunities for Stratasys. MakerBot also has a growing 3D ecosystem where its platform, Thingiverse.com, allows users to share and customize digital files that can be printed on their 3D printers. In fact, MakerBot had won multiple industry honors for its powerful combination of printers and its 3D printing ecosystem, including Time Magazine’s best inventions of 2012.

What now?

The combined Stratasys, Ltd. (NASDAQ:SSYS) will offer multiple technology platforms and complementary products. MakerBot can expand its reach and offering by leveraging Stratasys’ global infrastructure and extensive know-how in Fused Deposition Modeling. Both companies are expecting to accelerate their growth after the merge.

While Staples, Inc. (NASDAQ:SPLS) has begun selling 3D Systems’ 3D printers and Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) has launched a complete 3D printing store aimed at mainstream users, Stratasys needs MakerBot to catch up with 3D Systems in the mainstream consumer market.

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