Italy-based Roboze announced they’ve joined the growing SAP Distributed Manufacturing program.
SAP is a massive software manufacturer, known for providing heavy-duty business administration functions, but also providing other types of business solutions. One new venture they’ve had is a new Distributed Manufacturing System.
What is this program? Here’s how they describe it:
SAP today announced it has signed an agreement with UPS (NYSE: UPS) to collaborate to transform the ad hoc world of industrial 3D printing into a seamless, on-demand manufacturing process from order through manufacturing and delivery. By integrating extended supply chain solutions from SAP with UPS’s additive industrial manufacturing and logistics network, SAP and UPS plan to enable companies large and small to access on-demand manufacturing with the touch of button, creating new opportunities to streamline their supply chains and get products to market more quickly and cost-effectively.
While this sounds like a simple ordering system, it’s far, far more than just that. Larger companies operate extremely complex administration systems that track all financial transactions in order to comply with tax regulations, monitor in <almost> real time their financial status, and integrate with internal processes and departmental budgets. If you think that’s challenging, consider a multinational company doing that for operations in 100+ countries. And then integrating it all together to find out what’s going on overall.
That’s what SAP does: it automates all of this activity. One of the many features it offers is the ability for departments to place orders for resources within their system.
This announcement is an extension of that capability, where participants in a company’s SAP system can directly order externally manufactured goods. Why not just order directly from the supplier? Because the paperwork in some large company situations is so unbearably complicated that they may not even bother.
The SAP Distributed Manufacturing system makes that easy because the entire transaction is automatically captured in their system, making ordering extremely simple for users. And if something is easy, it will be done more frequently.
Initially SAP’s Distributed Manufacturing program had a number of notable 3D print participants, including: Stratasys, HP, Airbus APWorks, and others. Each are major players.
Now Roboze, a relatively small Italian 3D printer manufacturer, has also joined the program. The company makes powerful desktop 3D printers capable of reliable printing in unusual high temperature materials.
By entering the SAP program, Roboze gains an equal footing with those other major players, at least in the eyes of the SAP participants through their system. This should result in the company obtaining a greater number of orders for prints and possibly equipment than they otherwise would have received.
It’s an excellent move for Roboze, and one that I haven’t seen other players of their size in the 3D print space take. Advantage to Roboze!