We’re reading a post on Motley Fool regarding opinions of investing in 3D printer company stock, and found some interesting thoughts.
The piece involves opinions from several writers and offers insight in different directions.
This has been a question among professional investors for some time, as there has been a ridiculous roller-coaster ride for those on 3D printing stocks in the past couple of years.
For a very long time, 3D printer company stocks (originally 3D Systems and Stratasys, then others more recently) were priced quite low as almost no one knew anything about 3D printing. Then, with the introduction of desktop machines upon the expiration of key patents, the technology came into the sight of the public and things got a little crazy.
There were huge (and unrealistic) expectations from many people, and this unfortunately (for some, fortunate for others) cause the stock prices to rise precipitously - only to fall dangerously fast when people’s knowledge of the technology became more realistic.
The question, then, is “when will the stocks recover?”
In the article, one writer suggests the money will come when new materials will emerge in the future, and further suggests that materials should be where the revenue comes from. While this is possible, it’s now pretty clear that, aside from the expensive commercial machines, generic material rules.
Another writer suggests recovery could be not happening in the foreseeable future due to messed up markets, messed up companies and the arrival of new competitors: HP, Carbon3D and Canon (?) Our thoughts are that these new competitors have huge steps to catch up: we suspect they do not yet have the experience and knowledge of the space to work with customers appropriately. As for messed up companies, there’s a bit of truth to that as both Stratasys and 3D Systems have undergone (and are undergoing) changes at the top, with both companies focusing strongly on specific, profitable markets.
The final writer suggests both 3D Systems and Stratasys:
Went on spending, merging, and acquiring binges and are now paying the piper as they're forced to step back, rationalize their businesses, and focus on profitable, organic growth.
This, we think, will be close to the truth. They’re big companies and it will take some time to get things going, but it will happen. We can see it happening already.
Via The Motley Fool