3D Systems acquires Chinese 3D printing sales firm Easyway

The buyout opens the doors for the 3D printing company to tap into China's emerging market.

3D Systems

3D Systems has acquired Easyway, a Chinese company which specializes in 3D printing sales and services.

Announced on Monday, the purchase of Easyway Design and Manufacture in China, including its subsidiaries comprising the Easyway Group, will be transformed into 3D Systems China.

Easyway operates across the country and in regions including Shanghai, Wuxi, Beijing, Guangdong and Chongqing. The firm brings 3D sales and services to industries across China including the automotive, medical and consumer fields. Easyway serves corporate clients such as VW, Nissan, Philips, Omron, Black & Decker, Panasonic and Honeywell.

Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

May Zhou, General Manager of Easyway commented:

"We are excited to become part of 3D Systems, a leading provider of the most complete portfolio of 3D digital design and fabrication solutions available today. We plan to leverage our collective knowledge and experience for the benefit of our customers by building a stronger local presence and immediately delivering the full range of 3DS products throughout China."

Zhou, the founder of Easyway, will remain to lead the newly formed 3D Systems China.

Through the purchase, 3D Systems will be able to tap into the emerging Chinese 3D printing market. 3D Systems, based in Rock Hill, South Carolina, currently focuses its operations in the United States with a particular focus on 3D printers, printing materials and custom parts.

In recent times, 3D Systems has promoted the use of 3D printing in the medical and dental fields, from custom surgical tools to dental designs.

The company says the acquisition provides 3D Systems with "a strong platform to scale its in-country Quickparts custom manufacturing operations and multiplexes its 3D printing reseller coverage." Quickparts is a division of 3D Systems which offers rapid prototype creation through 3D printing, cutting out the traditional expense of developing and manufacturing new products ready for the market.

In a country such as China, where manufacturing is a major source of corporate income, the service is likely to appeal to firms looking to cut down production costs.

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Not only this, but thanks to Easyway's existing distribution and sales relationships with customers such as Nissan and Panasonic, 3D Systems now has an existing strong customer base in the country to solidify its presence in China.

Avi Reichental, President and CEO of 3D Systems said:

"With operations in key Chinese cities and well-established 3D printing sales and service bureau operations, Easyway represents the cornerstone of our expansion plans for China. We believe that the strong relationship and strategic fit between our companies, combined with Easyway's on-the-ground infrastructure, coverage and deep customer relationships, could present significant benefits for our customers, sizeable growth opportunities for us and long-term value for our shareholders."

In January this year, the additive manufacturer purchased London-based 3D printer maker botObjects.

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