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Summary and extracts

1 Market overview

1.1 Definition and Introduction

A 3D printer is a machine that allows to design real objects in 3 dimensions from a file created with 3D design software. The objects created can be models, parts, scale models or prototypes. 3D printers can be used for industrial or personnal purposes depending on their use.

The production of parts via 3D printers requires: 

  • The production of materials for 3D printing (plastics, resins, metal dust),
  • The use of machines and 3D printers
  • Softwares (creation softwares)
  • Sometimes services and consulting activities in 3D printing

The 3D printing (or additive manufacturing) market includes the following activities:

  • sales of 3D printing machines and solutions
  • sales of printed products via specialized machines to customers wishing to create product prototypes
  • printing services

The global market for 3D printers is growing rapidly in terms of printers sold. Companies are heavily investing in the use of 3D printers. It is however still dominated by Germany, the United States and China.

Industrial printers, while representing a small share of total sales, account for the majority of revenue generated. The rest of the sales are desktop 3D printers. The sector is relatively concentrated and organized around a few printer manufacturers for the industrial and desktop segments. 

Regarding Portugal, 3D printing is slowly evolving and is not yet used in large production lines. Currently, this type of printing is mainly used to prototype products. The market prospects are however very promising: the speed at which investments in this market are increasing is three times faster than that of the traditional industry. [Jornal Económico

1.2 A recent and booming global market

The global *D printing market was valued at USD **.** billion in ****, with a compound annual growth rate (***) of **.* percent predicted from **** to ****. *D printers were supplied in *.* million units globally in ****, with shipments predicted to reach **.* million units by ****. The market is predicted to increase due to intensive research and development ...

1.3 The Portugese market

The INE website, which categorizes official Portuguese data, gathers the whole Portugese printing market under one domain, Printing and services related to printing (***), which is then divided into different parts.  In ****, the whole market was worth *** million €.

  Répartition des marchés portugais de l'impression Portugal, ****, en pourcentage Source: ****

On ...

1.4 COVID-19 crisis highlights the value of 3D printing

The COVID-** crisis, although it affected the printing industry in Portugal severely, demonstrated the industrial and medical benefits of *D printing. Indeed, swabs, protective masks, visors, elbow grips, breathing valves, as well as many other objects were *D printed during the health crisis.

"The additive manufacturing market has grown significantly, ...

2 Demand Analysis

2.1 The 3D printer: a revolutionary tool in many industries

Global spending on *D printing has grown significantly, driven by the increasing integration of *D printers into various industrial processes. The *D printing market has several outlets: industry, high-tech, consumer goods, etc. As shown below, industry is the main market and accounts for nearly **% of the demand for *D printing. The ...

2.2 The 3D printer, an increasingly popular product.

According to a **** market report by market leader Sculpteo, the penetration rate of *D printers is constantly changing. In fact, as we can see from the graph below, this penetration rate has increased from *% in **** to nearly **% in ****. Beyond the growing popularity of *D printers, the continuous growth of the penetration ...

The 3D printer demand coming from Portuguese companies

Even though the demand for *D printers has been growing in recent years, it remains relatively low on the part of Portuguese companies. For example, in **** and ****, only *% of Portuguese companies had a *D printer in their office.  

Companies using devices or interconnected systems monitored/controlled by *D printing, as % of ...

2.4 Healthcare, a major growth driver for the 3D printing market

The medical sector is a real growth driver for *D printing. Indeed, the manufacture of implants and nanotechnology is particularly well suited to *D printing. The purpose of an implant is to replace an organ over a long period of time or to replace one or more of its functions. It ...

3 Market structure

3.1 3D printing global market players

The *D printing market is in full swing. In fact, we can see that several types of players coexist in this market:

Large groups: Large, diversified, multi-activity groups such as General Electric, HP or Siemens. Pure players: *D printing specialists (***) such as *D Systems, Stratasys and Xerox. 

The cohabitation of these ...

3.2 Global 3D printer production is concentrated in a few countries

The  Wohlers **** report states that there were a total of **,*** industrial installations of *D printers between ****-****. As we can see from the chart below, **.*% of this production was from the United States, compared to **.*% from China, *.*% from Japan *.*% and *.*% from Germany

Production mondiale d'imprimantes *D Monde, ****, en % Source: ****

3.3 An increase in the number of 3D printing companies in Portugal

While concentrated internationally, the *D printer market is deconcentrating at the Portuguese national level, with a slightly growing turnover for a number of companies that has been growing steadily since **** (***). Thus, while the sector of "Other printing" was composed of **** companies in ****, it consisted of **** in ****. 

Evolution du nombre d'entreprises portugaises ...

4 Analysis of the offer

4.1 The three dominant technologies in the 3D printing market

*D printing is based on several underlying technologies. According to a **** market report by market leader Sculpteo, there are * main technologies used in the *D printing industry:

Fused deposition modeling (***): this is a type of additive manufacturing technology that enables the construction of three-dimensional objects, prototypes, and products through a computer-aided ...

4.2 Different 3D printer prices depending on the range and use

According to Internet price comparisons, the price of a *D printer depends on the range and its use (***). The accessibility of *D printers has been gradually democratized since **** in Portugal with prices that could reach *** *** € for an average of first prices at * *** €.  

There are now * main price ranges for *D printers ...

4.3 The future of 3D printing

The future of *D printers is strongly linked with the trends in materials used. According to a study on *D printing by Forbes, there are * main types of materials used in *D printing: 

Plastic Metal Resin Stoneware Wax Ceramic

If the price can have an incidence the choice of materials, it ...

5 Regulations

5.1 Indirect regulation supplemented by specific standardization

Due to the recent emergence of additive manufacturing technologies, there is a relative lack of national or international regulation. However, the multiplication of standards allows for a precise framework of *D printing processes. 

A regulation resulting from the use of chemical products

In a professional context, the site where a *D ...

6 Positioning of the players

6.1 Segmentation of market players

  • SLM Solutions
  • Stratasys
  • 3D Systems
  • EOS
  • XPIM - 3D Printing
  • Sculpteo
  • GE Vernova
  • HP Hewlett Packard

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Latest news

Telecoms: equipment manufacturer Juniper joins Hewlett-Packard Enterprise - 10/01/2024
  • Juniper, the US specialist in routers, switches and Juniper IT security firewalls, is sold to Hewlett-Packard Enterprise for €14 billion.
  • HPE's Intelligent Edge business recorded $5.2 billion in revenues in the fiscal year November 2022 to October 2023.
  • Juniper's sales are expected to exceed $5 billion, up 6%.
General Electric benefits from aeronautics - 25/04/2023

General Electric (GE) first-quarter global sales:

Increase of 14% to $14.5 billion.

Sales increase in aerospace division: 25%.

Renewable energies division sales down 1%.

Sales in traditional energies division up 9%.

GE first-quarter 2022 net loss: $1.1 billion.

GE first-quarter net income: $7.4 billion.

Full-year adjusted earnings per share forecast: between $1.70 and $2 (low range raised from previous forecast of $1.60 to $2).

GE share price increase before the Wall Street opening: 1.8%.

Planned separation of GE's energy and aerospace businesses: early 2024.

GE raises its guidance after a good 1st quarter - 25/04/2023

Full-year earnings forecast: adjusted earnings between $1.70 and $2 per share (previously $1.60-2).

Cash flow forecast: between $3.6 billion and $4.2 billion ($200 million increase at lower end of range).

First-quarter cash flow: $102 million.

First-quarter sales: $14.49 billion (up 14% year-on-year).

FactSet analysts' consensus for first-quarter sales: $13.10 billion.

First-quarter sales for the Aeronautical Division up 25%.

First-quarter sales for the renewable energies division: down 1%.

First-quarter sales for the Energy Division: up 9%.

First-quarter adjusted earnings: 27 cents per share (versus a loss of 9 cents per share a year earlier).

FactSet consensus for first-quarter earnings: 14 cents per share.

GE shares: up 1.4% to $101.53 in reaction to the announcements.

HPE boasts that it has sold the world's most powerful computer. - 09/03/2023
  • In 2016, the Palo Alto firm swallowed SGI, a supplier of high-performance servers, for $275 million
  • In 2019, the acquisition of supercomputer manufacturer Cray enabled it to further expand its offering.
  • The HPC (High Performance Computing & Artificial Intelligence) market is growing fast. According to data from MarketsandMarkets, the global market is set to grow from $36 billion in 2022 to around $50 billion by 2027
  • With around 100 machines listed, HPE scores well against its challengers, China's Lenovo and Inspur (160 and 50 supercomputers respectively) and France's Atos (43)

Companies quoted in this study

This study contains a complete overview of the companies in the market, with the latest figures and news for each company. :

SLM Solutions
3D Systems
XPIM - 3D Printing
GE Vernova
HP Hewlett Packard

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