3D: Rise of the metal printing machines

  • The 3D printer market is forecast to grow strongly in 2017 – 29% for Industrial printers and 20% for Consumer printers.
  • 3D Industrial metal printer companies have gained market share compared to 3D Industrial polymer printer companies.
  • Recent 3D metal printer acquisitions by General Electric and market entry of 3D polymer printers by Hewlett-Packard offer stiff competition to Stratasys and 3D Systems.

You wouldn’t know it from financial reports from Stratasys (SSYS) and 3D Systems (DDD), but the 3D printing industry is alive and well and growing. According to The Information Network’s report entitled “3D Printing: Material and Equipment Opportunities, Trends, and Markets,” Industrial 3D printers are slated to grow 27% in 2017. The Industrial segment of 3D printers is the sweet spot of metal printers, primarily because revenues of these high-priced units are growing at the expense of polymer printers.

The Industrial segment is characterized by high prices, low sales volume, and increasing average selling prices (ASPs). In contrast, the Consumer segment is characterized by low prices, high sales volume, and decreasing ASPs.

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