3D Systems is currently a South Carolina based corporation focused on manufacturing and design of one of the most discussed and popular innovations of the modern world – 3D (three dimensional) printers. In fact, this company is recognized to be the inventor of the concept of 3D printing.
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The corporation was founded in May of 1993. This is a holding company and it functions with the help of subsidiaries of the USA, Asian-Pacific area, and Europe. The price range for the 3D printers manufactured by 3D Systems varies from less than 1000 USD to almost one million.
The company’s main business is focused on solutions concerning design and manufacturing not only of 3D printers, but also print materials, custom parts for professional and nonprofessional consumers; these materials include ceramics, metals, plastics, and edibles (3D Systems Corp (DDD), n. d.).
Besides, 3D Systems provides a number of additional devices such as scan-to-CAD (computer aided design), inspection and freedom modeling tools. The engines the company’s printers are based on are various.
Among them there are SLS (selective laser sintering), MJP and CJP (multi jet and color jet printing), FTI (film transfer imaging), SLA (stereolithography), and finally plastic jet printing known as PJP. These printers are designed to work with a wide range of materials and their blends.
Moreover, 3D Systems provides a number of specially developed software tools such as Cubify and Geomagic that bring more opportunities for design and creativity in application of 3D printing. These software tools allow manipulations with scanners, creation of and work with 3D content and CAD packages.
The professionals of 3D Systems have a goal to democratize adoption of products and services provided by the company. The specialists are committed to the increase of simplicity and affordability of the suggested goods to please a wider range of professionals and consumers.
Due to the efforts of 3D Systems 3D printing will soon stop being the prerogative of professional producers or designers, but move to homes and educational facilities (3D Systems Corporation: Annual report on form 10-K, 2013).
The main acquisition challenge associated with the industry 3D Systems Corporation competes in is integration of cost-effective solutions and introduction of savings in production and services.
The two main competitors of 3D Systems are HP and Stratasys. Currently, the experts agree that even though the whole 3D printing industry experienced a massive growth of revenues over the years between 2010 and 2014, and 3D Systems benefited the most, the future seems to be more favorable for Stratasys (Stoffel, 2015).
There are several bases for such conclusion. First of all, Stratasys employs a clever approach to acquisitions, it recently merged with Objet and Makerbot, and joined forces are definitely going to make the corporation stronger in the long run.
Besides, the company has accumulated what can be viewed as a war chest of funds, which can be spent on a powerful marketing campaign or as resources to attract better specialists in the industry and strengthen the business even more.
Finally, Stratasys has the largest number of 3D printers installed in the world which means that in the future this company will gain the largest income selling proprietary 3D printing materials (Stoffel, 2015).
At 3D Systems it is believed that the best way to become successful in the industry that has so many applications a designer has to be able to offer a wide range of technologies for all kinds of consumers (Heller, 2014). This way, 3D Systems provides a number of tools and different kinds of printers specialized on various tasks.
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This is where Hewlett-Packard becomes a serious threat because this company’s Multi Jet Fusion 3D printing technology is a very adjustable and flexible product that can work with a variety of tasks and materials.
Currently, HP is focused on the development and modification of this technology in order to make it even more advanced and be able to modify elasticity, strength, texture and color of printed objects.
Overall, HP is a very serious competitor that should not be underestimated as it has a large budget and an impressive team of developers who are empowered by decades of work with 2D printing.
3D Systems is aware of the potential threats posed by its main competitors Stratasys and HP and still has several years before their innovation and design strategies will hit the market.
3D printing is one of the world’s most successful markets because it is applicable and extremely useful for a number of fields among which there are aerospace, automotive, health and medicine, and a variety of electronic and fashion accessories.
In aerospace and automotive field 3D is popular because it can provide light and enduring details of complex shapes. In healthcare 3D printing allows creation of customized means such as prosthetics, bones, organs; besides, it allows modeling of organs, tumors and veins for better visibility.
Moreover, in the sphere of fashion and entertainment this technology allows printing various toys, customized action figures, and accessories.
3D Systems Corp (DDD). Reuters. Web.
3D Systems Corporation: Annual report on form 10-K. (2013). 3dsystems.com. Web.
Heller, S. (2014). 3D Systems Corporation (DDD) Stock: Is Hewlett-Packard Company a Massive Threat? Web.
Stoffel, B. (2015). Forget 3D Systems Corporation, I’m Buying Stratasys, Ltd. Web.