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3DEO secures strategic investment from Seiko Epson and Development Bank of Japan

Marking another major investment by Japanese firms in metal AM

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3DEO, a Los Angeles-based leader in design, engineering and metal additive manufacturing via a unique high-throughput technology, received a significant investment from the Development Bank of Japan Inc. (DBJ) and EPSON (Seiko Epson Corporation). This partnership marks a pivotal step in 3DEO’s expansion and underscores the confidence in its proprietary end-to-end 3D printing technology.

Over the past few years Nikon, another major Japanese company, made very significant investments in AM, which began with California-based metal AM service provider Morf3D and led to the acquisition of metal PBF hardware company SLM Solutions. This investment from DBJ and EPSON investment will propel 3DEO’s growth strategies in North America and Japan, expanding opportunities for partnership in the semiconductor, aerospace, medical devices and equipment, and industrial sectors.

“The collaboration with DBJ and EPSON is a powerful endorsement of our mission to empower product and engineering teams across the globe,” said Matthew Petros, CEO and Co-founder of 3DEO. “This investment is not just capital; it’s a commitment to a shared vision of challenging what’s possible through the combination of additive design principles and differentiated capabilities.”

3DEO secures strategic investment from EPSON and DBJ marking another major investment by Japanese firms in metal AM
3DEO adds DfAM as core service. Offering design and engineering services to its customers throughout the entire product lifecycle.

3DEO’s unique approach focuses on a specialization in complex metal 3D printed components/assemblies and advanced Design for Additive Manufacturing (DfAM). The process developed by 3DEO – as detailed in VoxelMatter’s latest Metal AM Market report – offers high throughput production using a particular version of binder-based technology. Although the company does not currently sell machines, it utilizes them internally to provide part production services. The 3DEO Intelligent Layering process is capable of competing with traditional manufacturing in terms of costs, especially for serial production (up to several tens of thousands) of small metal parts. It involves applying a layer of 10-micron metal powder particles with a thickness ranging from 50 to 500 microns.

Afterward, the entire layer is sprayed with a binder, and up to eight high-precision cutters define the perimeter of each part of the layer. This process, which is faster than selective binding via an inkjet printhead, is repeated. Additionally, this technique offers the benefits of eliminating layer lines and facilitating high automation of build tray and part removal. This has enabled the LA-based company to produce more part units than any other company in the world of metal AM.

The technology developed by 3DEO is underpinned by a differentiated portfolio of 18 patents and it empowers customers to innovate and design competitively positioned products. The full end-to-end solution, encompassing proprietary software, metal 3D printers, robotics, and materials, streamlines the production process. This integration significantly reduces the complexity for clients, allowing them to scale up without the burden of mastering AM processes themselves, supported by 3DEO’s comprehensive DfAM training and expertise.

3DEO secures strategic investment from EPSON and DBJ marking another major investment by Japanese firms in metal AM In Japan, there is a strong belief in conventional metalworking based on precision casting, which has supported the growth of the machining and assembly industry and the optimization of the supply chain in terms of quality and cost. However, while there is a movement toward research and development of AM technologies and DfAM, the adoption rate at production sites faces significant barriers. This collaboration is poised to address these challenges, contributing to the advancement of AM technologies within Japan’s established manufacturing landscape.

The strategic investment by DBJ and EPSON aligns with DBJ’s mandate to foster “technological innovation and reorganization of industry,” and with Epson’s mission to promote “manufacturing innovation” under its Epson 25 Renewed Corporate Vision. Made through the DBJ Startups and Innovation Fund, the investment will bolster 3DEO’s business expansion in North America and Japan, igniting a new era of global innovation and production efficiency.

“By integrating 3DEO’s AM capabilities with the meticulous engineering tradition of Japan, we aim to unlock new levels of productivity and expand the manufacturing possibilities in one of the world’s leading economies,” said Payman Torabi, CTO and Co-founder of 3DEO. “This investment is a testament to the trust and potential seen in 3DEO’s innovative approach. We are excited to collaborate with DBJ and Epson, leveraging their expertise and market reach to enhance and refine the landscape of Additive Manufacturing.”

DBJ and EPSON’s investment, secured after careful review by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS), will enable 3DEO to leverage the Japanese manufacturing industry’s strengths while fostering technological advancements in both regions. DBJ will provide hands-on support to 3DEO and work closely with Epson and other stakeholders to proactively support 3DEO in building its business and increasing its corporate value. In addition, DBJ will serve as a nexus for all parties involved, including the national and local governments and related private companies, and contribute to the social implementation of DfAM in Japan, aiming to contribute to the innovation and restructuring of the manufacturing industry.

“We are excited to see how this synergy will support our continued mission to empower customers with unparalleled design freedom and production capabilities,” added Petros.

3DEO’s business model and full-stack solution position it as a vanguard in the industry, reducing development costs and time for its partners. With this strategic investment, 3DEO is poised to disrupt traditional and advanced manufacturing processes further, bringing innovative products to market faster and more efficiently than ever before.

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Davide Sher

Since 2002, Davide has built up extensive experience as a technology journalist, market analyst and consultant for the additive manufacturing industry. Born in Milan, Italy, he spent 12 years in the United States, where he completed his studies at SUNY USB. As a journalist covering the tech and videogame industry for over 10 years, he began covering the AM industry in 2013, first as an international journalist and subsequently as a market analyst, focusing on the additive manufacturing industry and relative vertical markets. In 2016 he co-founded London-based VoxelMatters. Today the company publishes the leading news and insights websites VoxelMatters.com and Replicatore.it, as well as VoxelMatters Directory, the largest global directory of companies in the additive manufacturing industry.

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