Vancouver-based 3D printing startup 3DQue is expanding, and I’m surprised.
3DQue is not a very old company; in fact, you can measure it’s existence in months. They produce a solution for low-volume manufacturing by connecting a series of 3D printers together to work in parallel. Their solution is relatively inexpensive, and there are few competitors.
“QPoD is the first mass production 3D printing unit. Powered by QSuite, a single QPoD can produce up to 100,000 parts per annum in only 10 sqft. QPoD is ideal for in-house production of plastic parts.
Each QPoD system provides 78,840 autonomous print-hours/year or up to 864 small parts/week.”
When I first encountered them, I am not even certain they were a legal company. The concept was developed by (literally) high school student Mateo Pekic, who produced what they now call the QPoD.
Initially the company was Pekic and his father, but they quickly added an experienced startup CEO, Step Sharp. Last fall at Formnext we saw they had hired one more staffer.
But their recent newsletter says the following:
“We hope everyone has had a great start to 2020! We’ve been busy scouting out new talent and expanding our team. We’re excited to announce the addition of 5 new employees in the last month!”
This greatly expands their team, and introduces these roles:
Environmental Science expert for sustainability
More Backend Developers
3D Printing Engineer
Director of Operations
What can we make of this?
It seems that several things are happening with the company.
First, they must have received investment to afford the addition of these staff. But we are unaware of any public investment, so it is likely a private investor has funded them to some degree.
Second, they must be selling units. If you require a Director of Operations to supervise product deliveries and installations, that’s a very positive sign.
I don’t know who they are selling units to, however, as their only public announcement of a customer involved a deal with Mitsubishi Chemical Performance Polymers in Michigan. I suspect the company is using the array of 3D printers to rapidly test different variations of filament products. We’re intending to see more of 3DQue at the upcoming Rapid event in Anaheim, and they may have more announcements about growth there.