Nikon and SLM Solutions have formally announced the former’s investment agreement that if approved would see a public takeover offer of €622M of SLM Solutions.
SLM Solutions and its wide range of integrated metal additive manufacturing solutions has played a prominent role in the advancement of 3D printing end use parts, with its portfolio of technologies capped by the giant 12 laser NXG XII 600 system, capable of building build rates of up to 1,000 ccm/h in its 600 x 600 x 600mm build chamber.
A publicly-traded company headquartered in Lübeck, Germany, with offices in Canada, China, France, India, Italy, Japan, Singapore, South Korea, and the United States, Nikon will be taking a controlling 61.1% of its total share capital.
At the announcement, SLM CEO Sam O’Leary, said: “Nikon has more than a century of history in developing cutting-edge opto-electronic technology and precision equipment. I am excited for SLM to partner with Nikon to further extend our technology leadership position.
“We believe this transaction and partnership is very beneficial for all our stakeholders – shareholders, employees and customers alike.”
Nikon CEO Toshikazu Umatate explained that the acquisition of SLM is an important part of its Vision 2030 initiative. “We are focused on digital manufacturing as a growth driver and will create value through the promising market of metal additive manufacturing,” he said.
“Metal additive manufacturing will revolutionise mass-production by enabling our clients to manufacture highly complex parts, reduce cycle time, carbon emissions, energy costs and waste.
“Nikon and SLM share the vision that our technology-driven innovation will transform the future of manufacturing. This acquisition will be key to growing our digital manufacturing business.”
In its Vision 2030 statement, Nikon set out the aim to become a key global technology solutions company with a focus on digital manufacturing. “Nikon believes that growth in digital manufacturing can best be achieved by the adoption of Metal AM, an industrial process of layering metals (akin to 3D printing),” it says in a statement.
Nikon’s existing portfolio of metals 3D printing methods will likely be joined with SLM Solutions as part of the ‘holistic solutions’ it intends to offer for mass production.
Back in 2016, SLM Solutions reportedly turned down a then $745M takeover from GE Additive due to a failure to reach the minimum acceptance threshold of 75% of SLM shares, which it then valued at $38 a share.