Stratasys and Objet merge as 3D printing arms race heats up

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The battle for 3D printing superiority has taken another bold step as Stratasys and Objet announced a merger that will combine two already high-ranking companies and associated technologies under the Stratasys brand.

Since 3D Systems embarked on a spending spree with a flurry of acquisitions the stage has been set for a clash of titans as the major 3D printing players look to take control of the industrial and newly touted domestic markets.

With an expansive product and technology portfolio, the new look Stratasys will be worth a staggering $1.4billion. It will combine Objet’s expertise in design verification and visualisation with Stratasys’ knowledge in functional testing and direct digital manufacturing.
In terms of specific technology, it will offer Stratasys’ FDM technology, used for functional prototypes and parts that need to be durable; the recently acquired Solidscape technology, used extensively in the jewellery and dentistry field to make complex wax patterns for the investment casting, and Objet’s PolyJet technology, which provides high resolution printing and multi-material builds, suited for rapid prototyping and applications that require high feature detail and a finer surface finish.

“Today marks a significant milestone for Stratasys and an important development for the 3D printing and direct digital manufacturing industry,” said Scott Crump, chief executive officer and chairman of Stratasys. “We are bringing together two of the most innovative and respected players in the field to create a global leader in a high-growth industry.”

The big questions for users revolve around the technology and how combinations of materials and technologies might offer up new options and exiting prospects for designers and engineers.

How do you see the move? Leave your comments below.

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