Bre Pettis MakerBot
Unless you've been living under a rock, you'll be fully aware of last week's biggest 3D printing news story. Sadly, I was out on various reporting missions at the end of the week so I did not get the opportunity to follow events as closely as I would have liked, but as ever, you can follow the public reaction to an extent in the markets.
To those of you who have been living under a rock - the new story to which I refer is of course Stratasys' (NASDAQ: SSYS) monumental acquisition of MakerBot, North America's very own Made In New York 3D printing business run by schoolteacher-turned-Wired coverboy Bre Pettis.
Because of the nature of the 3D printing stock market - miniscule as it is within its larger tech stock bubble - no company is immune to news such as this. The proposed $403 million merger weighed heavily on our Big Three last week with our two titans Stratasys and 3D Systems (NYSE:DDD) losing some ground in the media frenzy, while ExOne's (NASDAQ:XONE) loss was not as pronounced.
So have our three heroes clambered out of the MakerBottom?
Stratasys may have parted with an obscene amount of money, but it is gaining one of the best-known 3D printing companies in the world. MakerBot is a shrewd investment - but then all of Stratasys' acquisitions have been very clever. Granted there haven't been many, but then merging with Objet is a deal that's not to be sniffed at.
News that MakerBot was in talks with a potential buyer had leaked to the mainstream media, and although speculation was rife as to who this acquirer could be, the news that in the end it was Stratasys still came as something of a shock.
The story broke late on June 19th and Stratasys had been enjoying a short-lived rally ahead of the announcement. However, the following day right up until mid-week, the company suffered a retreat from nearly $86 per unit to $79 per share.
And the 3D printing giant looks set to end the week on an off-beat, having opened trading today on the slide, losing 0.8 per cent to $82.51 per unit during mid-morning trading.
3D Systems has not been immune to this market ripple. The company was one of the rumoured acquirers ahead of Stratasys' buyout news and when it transpired the biggest company in the industry was not behind the most talked about merger of the summer, 3D Systems lost out. Its stock began falling even before the news was announced, retreating from $47 per unit at the end of last week and sliding down to a month-low of under $43 per unit on Monday.
3D Systems has recovered a little but in trading today, the company's stock is still just hovering above $44 per unit. Which is disappointing when you consider the $50 per share spike 3D Systems enjoyed at the beginning of the month.
Since the Stratasys/MakerBot deal was made public, 3D Systems has launched its new website and announced that it is embarking on asteroid prospecting aircraft and is expanding the reach of one of its 3D printing materials. But none of this has done much to buoy the company's share price.
ExOne meanwhile is enjoying a rosier morning. Its stumble after the Stratasys/MakerBot news last week was less pronounced compared to 3D Systems, indeed it barely lost a dollar.
Since the beginning of the week, ExOne has enjoyed a rally from just lower than $50 per unit to $61 per share. Jump of this size for any stock over the space of a week is marked and today alone the company's shares are up by 3.7 per cent.
The company has benefited from news of its collaboration with vacuum furnace manufacturer Ipsen to offer "a complete 3D printing package", while the growth of its reputation as a company that specialises in metals will be doing it no disservice as the manufacturing technology develops. Already, the company counts Ford, BMW and Caterpillar among its clients.
Finally, Renishaw (LSE:RSW) has been having an underwhelming week, dropping from 1690.00 per unit before the weekend to 1540.00 on Tuesday. Since then, it has regained some lost ground but again retreated this morning by 2.3 per cent to 1600.00 per unit.
TCT Show + Personalize
And another matter that may be of interest to those residing under a rock is none of the than TCT Show + Personalize, which added half a dozen new speakers to its exciting schedule. Now attendees can look forward to hearing the likes of Alice Taylor, CEO of MakieLab, designer Yvonne van Zummeren, GrabCAD CEO Hardi Meybaum and 3DPrintUK boss Nick Allen at the September event.
Registration is free and there is still space for companies looking to exhibit. Furthermore, those keeping an eye on the maker side of 3D printing can explore this fascinating part of the industry at the RepRap Hub, where RepRap stalwart and TCT Show speaker Richard Horne will be on-hand to answer questions.