The former president of Quark Software purchased a 7% stake in Desktop Metal

At the end of May this year The 3D printing industry was shaken by the news of the merger of Stratasys and Desktop Metal, in a deal worth $ 1.8 billion. When it is finally completed – which is expected to take place in the fourth quarter of 2023, the combined companies will create the largest entity based solely on additive technologies in the entire history of the global 3D printing market. At the same time, the information about the merger triggered further events – first Nano Dimension, an Israeli company that has been trying to take over Stratasys for a year without success, made further (unsuccessful) attempts to influence the company’s shareholders and take over at least its controlling stake, and a moment later 3D Systems – the largest competitor of Stratasys, also expressed a desire to buy it. Notwithstanding the above, a few days after the official announcement of the merger, Iranian-American billionaire Farhad “Fred” Ebrahimi acquired 23,881,002 shares of Desktop Metal, representing ~7.43% of its shares.

But it doesn’t stop there… Along with the share purchase, Ebrahimi applied for “activist investor” status (more on that below…) to sell half a million shares on June 5, 2023, still holding 7.26% of the shares – more than the next largest investors companies – Vanguard and Blackrock, which have 6.94% and 6.5% of shares, respectively.

An activist investor is a person or institution that buys a significant stake in a company and then tries to influence its direction. The goals of the activist investor may be various changes, such as corporate reorganization, changing business strategy, changing the composition of the board of directors, or even selling the company. The activities of investment activists can be controversial – on the one hand, they can contribute to improving financial results and increasing shareholder value by forcing changes that, in their opinion, will bring benefits, on the other hand, they may focus on short-term profits at the expense of the company’s long-term strategy, which may negatively affect their development.

Ebrahimi says he has a very good relationship with Desktop Metal’s management and supports the company’s merger with Stratasys. This does not change the fact that his decision to become an activist investor may affect the course of the entire transaction…

Farhad Ebrahimi made his fortune as co-owner and CEO of a company that produces typesetting software for documents, books, newspapers and magazines – QuarkXPress. In 2006, he transferred all shares in the company to his children, who in 2011 sold them to the Platinum Equity investment fund. He himself started investing money in other companies. His most interesting investments include ViewRay, a company specializing in medical imaging, and First Solar, the world’s leading producer of solar panels, with a market value of $20 billion.


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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