Geo Week News

May 3, 2013

First major U.S. retailer now selling 3D printers - for just $1,299

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3D Systems’ recently launched consumer 3D printer The Cube selling at ‘top of expectations’

Staples Inc., the world’s largest office products company, said Friday it is the first major U.S. retailer to sell 3D printers – allowing consumers and businesses to create objects using digital technology – by now offering online The Cube 3D Printer for just $1,299.

“Staples is excited to bring the power of 3D printing to our customers, by being the first major U.S. retailer to announce the availability of this innovative technology that lets you create fully formed objects in your home or small business,” said Mike Edwards, Staples executive vice president, merchandising. “Staples is known for carrying the latest technology and 3D printers are the most recent example of our commitment to offering every product your business needs to succeed.”

 Staples calls 3D printing ‘revolutionary’ 

Based outside of Boston, Staples operates over 2,000 stores in 26 countries and is the world’s second largest e-commerce company. It called 3D printing “a revolutionary method and an efficient technology for manufacturing.”

It called The Cube, which it will sell in select stores by the end of June, the “perfect 3D printing device” for designers, small businesses, students and kids, the company said, adding that for companies creating new products, “3D printing can make it easier to design and test new concepts, and decrease the time to market.”

The ultra-portable Cube, recently released from 3D Systems Corp., is out-of-the-box ready, compatible with Mac or Windows and Wi-Fi-enabled. The Cube can print items up to 5.5″ x 5.5″ x 5.5”, using material cartridges in 16 different colors including metallic silver, glow in the dark and vibrant and neutral colors.

Users can either print from 25 free 3D templates designed by professional artists, with additional templates available online, or create a design using Cube’s software, Cubify Invent, sold separately. The Cube also includes recyclable ABS and compostable PLA plastic cartridge refills, replenishment CubeSticks, which are used to stabilize the object being printed, and replacement Cube Print Pads.

“We are absolutely thrilled that a leader and innovator of the caliber of Staples is making it easy to get our award winning Cube 3D Printer family on-line and in their stores. Staples is the ideal partner to deliver the only true plug and play 3D printer to offices, living rooms, classrooms and hobby shops, extending our reach and consumer access,” said Avi Reichental, CEO of 3D Systems, a major manufacturer and provider of 3D commercial and consumer printers, printing materials and software services as well as CAD modeling, reverse engineering and inspection software tools.

3D Systems bullish on 3D printer sales

Reichental said last week during a conference call with analysts to discuss first quarter financial results that sales of The Cube since its January launch are “at the top end of our expectations.”

3D Systems reported record quarterly revenue of $102.1 million, up 31 percent. Sales of its 3D printers and other products grew 61 percent to $39.7 million for the quarter ended March 31. And, sales of its personal printers increased 85 percent.

First quarter net income dropped to $5.9 million, or 6 cents per share, but excluding one-time items, the Rock Hill, S.C.-based 3D Systems earned 21 cents per share meeting analysts’ expectations.

“We expect 2013 to be our most exciting and most productive new product introduction year in the history of the company,” said Reichental.

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