Belgium-based Materialise seems to be making some interesting moves lately.
The company made some announcements that caught my eye.
First, the company announced they’ve acquired ACTech, which appears to be a competent German metal casting company. Materialise explains they’ve acquired them to draw upon ACTech’s significant expertise in handling metal, which would be an advantage to Materialise improving their ability to 3D print metal. Check out this sample complex part cast by ACTech:
But also it means they’ve acquired a division that can perform metal casting, something the 3D print service hasn’t done before, as far as we know. That’s interesting, as it might hint that Materialise is moving towards a more full service manufacturing operation, from one that is primarily 3D printing.
Another interesting move is their opening of a new building at their Belgian HQ, providing a huge 5500sm (60,000sf) of additional work space.
They’ve also recently opened a new office in Poland.
What all of this tells me is that they are doing extremely well financially, as only competent companies with strong feelings about the future would make such investments. Each of these moves is making the company bigger and more able to do more things.
I’m expecting to see some interesting new developments from the long-time 3D print service in coming years based on these moves.
It also says something important about 3D printing as a whole: it’s a healthy business to be in, if you’re running a competent service.