3DExpress: Shapeways Declares Bankruptcy

Published on July 6, 2024 by Madeleine P.
Shapeways bankruptcy #3Dexpress

It has been a particularly interesting week for additive manufacturing. Between the end of RAPID + TCT and the huge announcements that we saw (including Nano Dimension’s intention to acquire Desktop Metal in the coming months), there was so much to keep up with. But not to worry, that is what #3DExpress is for! For business, check out the news about Shapeways and its declaration of bankruptcy before as well as BASF Forward AM’s new independence from BASF. Then, for medical news, learn more about the new ceramic dental implant from Lithoz. Wrap up RAPID + TCT, learn about Creality’s new multicolor print. And don’t miss the latest 3D printing bicycle news from Scope. Have a great weekend and happy reading!

Shapeways Has Declared Sector 7 Bankruptcy

One of the biggest pieces of news to come out of this week was undoubtedly Shapeways declaring bankruptcy and completely ceasing operations under the provisions of Chapter 7 of Title 11 of the United States Code. Since the company went public via an SPAC merger in 2021, it has been one of those that has suffered severely from a turbulent stock market, with shares have been plummeting ever since. Indeed, back in February, the company auctioned off its Desktop Metal printers and though at the time was seen more for the negative impact for DM, it was also a clear sign of the struggles of the company. As of right now, according to the company’s Form 8-K, all Shapeways C-level executives and directors have resigned and it seems that all other staff have been laid off and a Chapter 7 trustee will be appointed to administer the company’s bankruptcy estate. A sad if not entirely shocking news for the 3D printing service bureau.

Shapeways bankruptcy

Parts made by Shapeways (photo credits: Shapeways)

A Ceramic 3D-Printed Dental Implant

Austrian manufacturer Lithoz has produced a 3D-printed jaw implant which has just been successfully placed in a patient. Made from ceramic materials, the implant is designed to provide a solution for atrophied jaws in the elderly. Tooth loss leads to the loss of jawbone, making dentures impossible. Lithoz has therefore used its resin 3D printing technology to design tailor-made implants. In this case, a biocompatible zirconia device was implanted in a patient at Kepler University Hospital. The operation, carried out by surgeon Dr. Christoph Staudigl, was the first of its kind and went very well, with the implant remaining stable after 60 days, with no healing problems.

The ceramic implant (photo credits: Lithoz)

Creality Unveils the K2 Plus Multicolor 3D Printer at RAPID+TCT

At the Rapid + TCT event held in Los Angeles June 25-27, manufacturer Creality unveiled its new K2 Plus multicolor 3D printer. The printer, a new member of Creality’s K series, features a large 350mm cubic print volume and high-speed multifilament 3D printing capabilities. Powered by Creality’s advanced Creality Filament System (CFS), the K2 Plus supports up to four 1 kg filament spools, enabling 16-color prints with RFID-enabled automatic filament management. This innovative system ensures precise material matching, improving print quality and efficiency.

The K2 Plus at RAPID + TCT 2024 (photo credits: Creality)

3D-Printed Wheel Hubs for Bikes

Scope is a Dutch bicycle manufacturer that has turned to new technologies to offer more efficient, lightweight and comfortable products. And the reason we’re telling you about it today is that the company uses additive manufacturing to design its wheel hubs. These are the central part of the wheel that connects the spokes and rim to the axle and frame. They are 3D printed from Scalmalloy, a scandium, aluminum and magnesium-based alloy renowned for its strength (comparable to that of titanium). Scope claims that, thanks to 3D metal printing, it can produce rear hubs weighing 140 grams and front hubs weighing 66 grams. This lightness is made possible by the use of topological optimization, which allows material to be removed where it is not needed, making the final part as light as possible.

The 3D printed bike hub (photo credits: Scope)

BASF Forward AM Becomes Standalone Company

Another striking piece of news was undoubtedly that all of BASF’s AM activities will now be taken over by BASF Forward AM, to continue on as an independent company. BASF has long been present in the AM sector with Forward AM representing the majority of the company’s 3D printing business. Now, however, it seems that BASF is formally bowing out of the market with everything now falling under the new Forward AM Technologies (or just Forward AM), including the Sculpteo 3D printing service bureau and all AM materials and solutions from the company. In a statement, Martin Back, CEO, commented, “I would like to express my gratitude to BASF for all their support during the MBO (Management-Buy-Out) process. By working together, we could ensure that our team of experts and the innovative tools currently in place can continue to provide leading AM solutions to the manufacturing industry in times of volatility. The team at Forward AM is truly passionate about shaping the future of manufacturing and all the exciting opportunities to build and grow within this innovative AM community. I’m looking forward to this empowering journey ahead.” Up to this point, Forward AM has shown strong performance with a 30% annual growth rate, according to a press release. We will see how the new company progresses in the coming months.

Forward AM has been present in the industry for quite some time (photo credits: BASF Forward AM)

What do you think of the news from Shapeways? What was the most interesting #3Dexpress news this week? Let us know in a comment below or on our LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter pages! Don’t forget to sign up for our free weekly newsletter here for the latest 3D printing news straight to your inbox! You can also find all our videos on our YouTube channel

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