3D printing has been identified as one of the 12 economically disruptive technologies by James Manyika at the global research firm McKinsey. It is estimated that 3D printing could generate positive economic impact of $230 – $550 billion per year by 2025, based on reduced cost and the value of customization, where consumer uses and direct manufacturing will be impacted the most.
One of the leading 3D printing companies, 3D Systems Corporation (NYSE:DDD) continues to expand into all levels of use, including personal, professional and production. 3D Systems was recently ranked No. 4 on Forbes’ “Fastest Growing Tech Companies” for 2013. For the past three years, 3D Systems Corporation (NYSE:DDD) achieved 46% sales growth and 30% EPS growth annually and continues to sustain its fast growth by internal organic growth and via acquisitions. Furthermore, 3D Systems continues to ride multiple uptrends, including strong demand for compressing product life cycle and reducing new product time to market, as well as increased parts and product complexity.
3D Systems’ edge
3D Systems Corporation (NYSE:DDD) has an unmatched, diversified portfolio and has the first-mover advantage in several key verticals, including patient-specific medical devices and advanced manufacturing. 3D Systems is well positioned in the 3D design-to-manufacture market with its five effective growth pillars, including reinventing engineer’s desktops, accelerating 3D printer adoption, expanding Quickparts service, growing healthcare solutions and building consumer presence.
What is 3D Systems doing?
By focusing on expanding its Quickparts services, 3D Systems Corporation (NYSE:DDD) is becoming a leading choice for quick-turn on-demand manufacturing services, allowing 3D Systems to gain direct access to end users. Furthermore, through the process of inventing the engineering desktop, 3D Systems sees the opportunity to become a connectivities platform to capture input devices and manufacturing systems.
3D Systems Corporation (NYSE:DDD) also continues to roll out new 3D printers that are twice as fast compared to the models being replaced. The company is also expanding and scaling Cubify.com, providing an exclusive ecosystem for 3D printing, including apps for gamified content creation. Being the only provider of comprehensive design to manufacturing solutions, 3D Systems believes that near-term growth opportunity lies with advanced manufacturing pushing further into the manufacturing floor. However, the company sees strong upside potential on the consumer end.
3D printing is getting popular
This 3D printing ecosystem has attracted large retailers, like Staples, Inc. (NASDAQ:SPLS), to join 3D Systems Corporation (NYSE:DDD)’ consumer initiatives. Following Staples, Inc. (NASDAQ:SPLS), Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) has also launched a complete 3D printing store. Amazon’s new 3D printing section provides one-stop shop for used and new printers, as well as filaments for the machines, books, software, and many other parts and supplies. With Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN)’s participation, 3D printing is going mainstream rapidly. However, being the first major e-commerce site to start selling 3D printers, Amazon is doing it quietly as safety concerns linger.