January 9, 2015

3D Systems acquires 3D printing firm BotObjects

Following a robust year of tech mergers that restored acquisition rates to those during the dot-com boom, 2015 has already seen M&A activity. 

3D printing technology has captivated market watchers, tech engineers and consumers alike. In the United States, South Carolina-based 3D Systems has emerged as a leader in the field, and recently announced the acquisition of London-based startup BotObjects, reports TechCrunch. 

The British firm boasts full-color 3D printing technology, a market niche that could help 3D Systems expand its capabilities and reach new areas of the sector. While the terms of the arrangement weren't available to the press, the acquisition marks an international partnership that could bring 3D printing to the foreground of tech conversations around the world. 

Co-founder and CEO of BotObjects Martin Warner will assume a vice president role at 3D Systems, and expressed his satisfaction with the acquisition in a statement. 

"Joining the winning team at 3DS couldn't have come at a better time as orders for our revolutionary full-color desktop printer continue to outstrip our resources. Together we can bring this powerful technology to more users faster," he said. His founding partner Mike Duma is also reported to be staying aboard. 

BotObjects has a line of products available for purchase but has experienced hiccups in distribution and viability of products. TechCrunch reports that customers have had trouble with the printer, though its patents should prove valuable to 3D Systems. The quality of its technology is perhaps BotObjects' greatest selling point, which could eliminate years of research and development for 3D Systems moving forward. 

As both companies fine-tune their wares and effect an integration strategy, the merger marks the beginning of a solid partnership that will combine expertise and resources to offer market-competitive 3D printing technology for consumers.