A reputable research company CONTEXT published its report about 3D printing market trends Q4 2015 and full year. Particular results are similar to the results from the other three quarter, which were published in January 2015. Stratasys kept the position of a an undisputed leader in selling of professional devices and  XYZPrinting strengthened its position of a leading manufacturer of low-budget 3D printers. Remarkable is also an achievement of M3D – a manufacturer of 3D printers Micro, which went up for the 3rd position in ranking of the biggest manufacturers of devices of this kind in the world.

Let’s start with market data for the whole 3D printing industry. In the Q4 2015 73.000 3D printers were sold (it is about 20.000 more than in whole 2013), and 96% of them were low-budget 3D printers, which cost below 5000 $. It increased of 22% in comparison to the last year. As far as professional devices are considered, only 2907 3D printers were sold, what means a 24%-drop in comparison to 2014.

According to annual figures , in 2015 30% 3D printers more were sold, than in 2014. In case of low-budget 3D printers it increased of 33%, but in case of professional 3D printers, it was only 9%. A total number of sold 3D printers in 2015 was 246.974. It is 30.000 more than Gartner estimated.

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In section of low-budget 3D printers, the leader is still a Taiwanese XYZPrinting, which demolished its competitors in Q4 2015 and sold 21.800 3D printers, what was 31% share on the market. It means, that every third sold 3D printer was da Vinci or Nobel.  The whole sale of 3D printers in this company in 2014 amounted to 50.100 devices. It looks quite interesting, especially, when you take MakerBot’s sale results (100.000 3D printers) into consideration, what took it 6 years…

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In Q4 2015, the second power in the world, as far as low-budget 3D printers are considered, became an American company – M3D, which sold more than 6.000 devices. It was 9% of shares on the market. Eventually, the company came in third. It is a fantastic result of the company, which in the second half of 2014 was an un-known start up, gaining a record amount of money on Kickstarter.

A Dutch company Ultimaker (the bigger manufacturer of 3D printers in Europe) closes a forefront of companies producing low-budget 3D printers, together with MakerBot, which noted a fall of sales. What is interesting, even a Chinese Flashforge outstripped MakerBot in Q4 2015… As far as Polish 3D printers are considered, Zortrax, which sold 5500 devices has about 2,3% of shares on the market.

It was mentioned, that a section of professional machines noted a fall of 10 %. The leader is still Stratasys, which controls a half of the market. The company sold 5690 3D printers, and 1382 of them were sold in Q4 2015. On the second place there is 3D Systems (22% of shares on the market), EnvisionTEC (10%), EOS (4%) i Mcor (3%). To sum up, the three first companies generate together 80% of sales volume in the whole section.Sprzedaż drukarek 3D 2015 01

The situation looks different in case of companies producing professional 3D printers. Stratasys and 3D Systems  are still on a leading position, but on the next places there are another companies, manufacturing 3D printers using metal or powdered plastic like: EOS, SLM Solutions and Arcam.

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All things considered…

  • Gartner was right. It makes all estimations for 2018 even more interesting. It will be possible to sell about 2.4 million devices yearly. It seems to be impossible for now, but the report shows, that the level of sales is still increasing,
  • “The price works miracles – cheap 3D printers (for less than 1000 $) are the main  drive of the whole market, maybe not in the context of its variety, but its popularisation. We have to remember about the next victors from Kickstarter – Tiko and OLO. Will they be the next Micro or Formlabs?
  • Is a demand for professional 3D printers falling? Are people fed up with them or are they waiting for a start ups of HP, Canon, Toshiba or Ricoh? Or are they rather waiting for CLIP?

Anyway, the future of this specific market is going to be positive. Let’s keep put fingers crossed for Gartner and 2018.

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Source: www.contextworld.com
Picture: [1]

Paweł Ślusarczyk
CEO of 3D Printing Center. Has over 15 years' experience in buisiness, gained in IT, advertising and polygraphy. Part of 3D printing industry since 2013.

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