3D printing, additive manufacturing sector arms up to scale

3D printing startups are going public via SPACs and raising funds to compete with incumbents. Here's the short version, additive manufacturing is entering a new, more mature phase.
Written by Larry Dignan, Contributor

3D printer and additive manufacturing companies are scaling up, raising capital and consolidating for good reason: There's a boom coming.

"Here's where we are in terms of global adoption. Manufacturing is a $12 trillion market. Additive at the end of last year was $12 billion. So, it's 0.1% penetration. This is like being in the semiconductor industry in the early 70s," said Desktop Metal CEO Ric Fulop.

Also consider that additive manufacturing played a key role in the supply chain during the COVID-19 pandemic, but 3D printing could have had a much larger impact. If countries need to keep manufacturing within their own borders, grow jobs and have a lower impact on the environment 3D printing is going to have to scale up. 

Wall Street is noticing the additive manufacturing potential. 

Google Finance Chart

The scale-up efforts of 3D printing companies are starting to pile up. Consider the following developments.

Simply put, 3D printing and additive manufacturing is going to be among the tech industries to watch in 2021. The competitors are all eyeing that manufacturing renaissance that's going to be increasingly digital.  


The Monday Morning Opener is our opening salvo for the week in tech. Since we run a global site, this editorial publishes on Monday at 8:00am AEST in Sydney, Australia, which is 6:00pm Eastern Time on Sunday in the US. It is written by a member of ZDNet's global editorial board, which is comprised of our lead editors across Asia, Australia, Europe, and North America.


Editorial standards