Stratasys is looking for Production Technologies

Stratasys plans to make a strategic move and shift its focus from prototyping-oriented technologies into full scale production. “Stratasys today leads the industry with the largest share in material extrusion and material jetting through our FDM and PolyJet technologies,” said the CEO Yoav Zeif (pictured above), during a conference call after the company had reported disappointing Q2 2020 results.

“However, these two technologies currently address only about one-third of the total additive manufacturing hardware opportunity. Further, their growth rates have slowed in comparison to the growth rates of other technologies that suit the needs of faster growing applications, especially in production.” Stratasys ended the quarter with a net loss of $28 million, joining a loss of $21.7 million in the first quarter – a total of $50 million in H1 2020.

COVID-19 hit the entire 3D Printing Market

This weakness characterizes the entire 3D printing market: Stratasys’s main competitor, 3D Systems, also reported a double-digit decline in revenue and losses in the last two quarters. Among other things, this is the result of COVID-19 crisis that led to a downsizing of many equipment purchasing plans in key industries around the world.

“We have already started the journey into true manufacturing,” added Zeif. “There are over 100,000 Polymer parts flying today that have been printed on Stratasys systems. Therefore, to help us win in these faster growing areas, we will invest organically and inorganically in new Polymer technologies such as PBM, VAT Photopolymerization and others.”

In PBM – Powder Bed Fusion technology –  a powdered polymer is solidified using a heat source such as a laser or a thermal print head. In VAT Photo Polymer technology, a solution of a light-sensitive polymeric substance is solidified by exposing it to ultraviolet radiation. Zeif revealed that in order to implement this strategy, the company is considering to acquire companies that specialize in these technologies.