Shapeways CEO: Become a Creator of the Products You Care About – 3D Printing Conference (Part 8)

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Shapeways CEO 3D Printing Conference

Shapeways CEO Gives an Update on His Company

Peter Weijmarshausen, the CEO and co-founder of Shapeways, a leading consumer facing 3D printing service company, started his keynote address today at the Inside 3D Printing Conference in New York with the question, “What do you really want?”  He went on to explain that the problem with mass manufacturing is forcing individual consumers to buy products that are identical to what other people buy, even though everyone has unique preferences.  To illustrate this point he showed a picture of a custom car.  “This is a labor of love, and extremely costly,” he said, pointing to the picture.  3D printing, on the other hand, makes customization easy.  And that makes it a very valuable service.

Shapeways Growth

So far it appears that Mr. Weijmarshausen is correct, as Shapeways is growing fast, and planning to grow even faster in the future.  Last year the company hosted Mayor Michael Bloomberg to open a new factory on Long Island, and just today it announced an additional $30 million in venture capital funding.  However, Mr. Weijmarshausen prefers touting slightly different metrics.  Today Shapeways has over 10,000 designers and over 300,000 community members that submit and purchase 60,000 new designs every month.

Yet it is not just the ability to upload and purchase designs that excites the people at Shapeways.  As shown in a brief demo of the ‘sake set creator’ app, the real vision is for consumers to be able to customize template designs in user-friendly applications.  Today it might be something as simple as a coffee cup or a lampshade, but Shapeways believes this is just the beginning.

The Future of 3D Printing

When asked what he hopes for the future of 3D printing, Mr. Weijmarshausen paused for a moment and then said new materials and larger scaling of the industry at large.  3D printing, as he pointed out, is still a very small industry.  The faster it grows, the more people will become aware of it, and in his opinion this will be good for not just Shapeways but also for consumers everywhere.


Authored by Brian H. Jaffe, founder of Mission St. Manufacturing and contributor to On 3D Printing.

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3 Responses to Shapeways CEO: Become a Creator of the Products You Care About – 3D Printing Conference (Part 8)

  1. Shapeways’ Factory of the Future is in Long Island City, not on Long Island. The proximity to the city and the emerging tech community in Hunter’s Point is an important fact to consider when understanding the significant impact that Shapeways is poised to have/having on NYC.

  2. [...] bioprinting human tissue for medical applications.  Longtime industry analyst Terry Wohlers and Shapeways CEO Peter Weijmarshausen also gave keynote addresses highlighting their vision for the industry’s [...]

  3. [...] – Part 8: Shapeways CEO: Become a Creator of the Products You Care About [...]

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