At this publication we are fortunate to see the myriad of new 3D printing ventures launching across the world.
But within that flow of information there are patterns. One we’ve noticed lately is a geographic pattern: there are a substantial number of 3D printing companies originating in Poland.
While most countries have a few 3D printing companies within their borders some have plenty, like the USA. However, there are clusters of companies in particular areas. One is the Netherlands, where spinoffs from the giant Philips corporation formed into Shapeways, Ultimaker and several others.
But there’s another area which seems to punch above its weight and that’s Poland.
What do I mean? Consider this list of prominent and not-so-prominent 3D printing companies from that country:
- HBOT 3D
- Aye Aye Labs
- 3D Labs
There are no doubt some I've missed on this list, and one more that seems to have disappeared recently, Pirx.
The country of 38M people is certainly well represented in the world of 3D printing with these companies.
I’ve been wondering why this particular country seems to be over-represented in 3D printing, and when I encountered someone from the area, I asked them the question directly.
The answer was interesting. Evidently Poland has a great many technical universities that have been cranking out talented engineers for years. This has been combined with a flow of investment money from Western Europe through the EU, has created a situation where it’s easier for these talented folks to conceive of and launch startups in a variety of disciplines, one being 3D printing.
I confirmed this by speaking with several other tech people from Poland, who agreed with the notion.
And in a sense, this is also what is happening in the USA: combine engineers with cash, and you get companies.
This is a formula that other countries should also consider.
Image Credit: Wikipedia