3-D printing is “ready to emerge from its niche status and become a viable alternative to conventional manufacturing processes in an increasing number of applications.” reported McKinsey.

What’s 3-D printing?

The tipping point is about to go mainstream in a big way. Most executives and many engineers don’t realize it, but this technology has moved well beyond prototyping, rapid tooling, trinkets, and even toys. It’s creating durable and safe products for sale to real customers in moderate-to-large quantities.

What are the advantages of using it?

  1. Easy to establish compared to standard manufacturing, because it requires establishing the complex array of machine tools, as well as the equipment required to produce them.
  2. The amount of production is not important if we compare it to standard manufacturing because it doesn’t offer anything like that economy of scale, so it can easily be modified to suit unique needs.
  3. Allows designs of complex products. For example, U.S. hearing aid companies converted to 100% 3-D printing in less than 500 days.

The platform opportunity

3-D printing has huge vying between the biggest company such as eBay, IBM, Autodesk, PTC, Materialise, Stratasys to develop the platforms on which other companies will build and connect. Even with this huge competition, there’s still very much up for grabs.

So, is investing in this market profitable?

The 3-D printing market is expected to garner $8.6 billion by 2020, registering a CAGR of 21% from 2015 to 2020. 3-D printing is also referred to as additive printing technology that lets manufacturers develop objects using a digital file and variety of printing materials.

In the end, there are more than 50 Profitable 3-D printing business ideas and opportunities if you want to invest in it.

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