3D Software

DSM launches ‘I AM Tomorrow’ acceleration program for 3D printing software startups

Global science-based company and material producer DSM has announced the I AM Tomorrow Challenge, an acceleration program designed to drive innovation in 3D printing. The initiative has been created for startups and scaleups focused on data analytics, AI and other advanced software solutions for large-scale 3D printing. Specifically, streamlining the 3D printing process flow is highlighted as a goal of the challenge.

Selected companies will participate in a ten-week acceleration program geared towards launching or maturing their business. Upon completion of the challenge, startups that took part may be eligible for funding or a partnership with DSM. 

The initiative was launched in collaboration with tech startup accelerator HighTechXL, Sweden-based global technology company Hexagon, and Netherlands based 3D printer manufacturer Ultimaker. Companies will have until 8 August 2019 to apply to the I AM Tomorrow Challenge. Ten selected startups will be invited to participate in the acceleration program at HighTechXL’s campus in Eindhoven, as well as in Boston, Massachusetts, taking place from September 16 – November 22. 

Hugo da Silva, VP Additive Manufacturing DSM, comments on the potential of the I AM Tomorrow Challenge:

“Digitalization will transform the world of manufacturing. By building an ecosystem of partners, we can work together to create tools that support 3D-printing design and production, helping our affiliates and customers create innovative new products in a more sustainable way. The I AM Tomorrow Challenge is a step toward a brighter future.”

Shaping the future of additive manufacturing

Founded in 1902, DSM broadly specializes in nutrition, health and materials, however the company maintains a significant footprint within additive manufacturing. As well as producing a wealth of materials for 3D printing, the company continues to collaborate and partner with various companies across the 3D printing value chain, seeking to develop and push the technology forward. The I AM Tomorrow Challenge represents an extension of that goal, aiming to “stimulate the digital ecosystem that could shape the future of additive manufacturing for decades to come.”

For example, DSM recently launched the Trimax Collective, a collaborative program designed to accelerate the adoption of additive manufacturing. It offers companies the flexibility to own and invest in 3D printing hardware and materials via a lease scheme, with current members including UK-based industrial 3D printer OEM RPS

The company also partnered with Adaptive3D, a Texas-based 3D printing resin specialist, in order to commercialize a resin-based soft rubber-like material for additive manufacturing. Furthermore, DSM is working with large-scale 3D printer supplier CEAD to pursue the development of new feedstock, tooling and end-use applications for pelletized 3D printing

DSM’s original Somos PerFORM material. Photo via DSM

The I AM Tomorrow Challenge

The I AM Tomorrow Challenge will consist of expert coaching sessions, masterclasses and networking opportunities designed to nurture growth within the participating startups. As the acceleration program takes place over its ten-week course, Hexagon’s Manufacturing Intelligence division will work with DSM and partners to evaluate the participating companies. It will work towards developing a platform aimed at providing end-to-end solutions for additive manufacturing with companies interested in being a part of it. 

The criteria for successful applicants revolves around startups creating software that aims to improve the process of additive manufacturing prior to prototyping. DSM is seeking such companies as it sees the requirement for digital solutions that can provide manufacturers with different additive manufacturing scenarios. This includes software geared towards optimizing performance, cost or sustainability.

Once the I AM Tomorrow Challenge is complete, DSM will invite selected startups to become official partners, as well as reveal which startups will be eligible for an investment from DSM Venturing.

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Featured image shows I AM Tomorrow Challenge from DSM. Image via DSM.