Israeli start-up Jiga has launched a new digital manufacturing marketplace that aims to create and ship parts three times faster than in-house production allows.
Backed by serial start-up accelerator Y Combinator, the fledgling firm offers to 3D print, CNC machine and sheet metal fabricate parts for clients, before shipping them out at a rapid pace. Jiga claims that its services modernize the production process, acting as a more flexible alternative to machine shop manufacturing, while minimizing supply chain disruption in the unstable post-pandemic world.
Jiga’s manufacturing marketplace
Founded last year in the Israeli city of Tel Aviv, Jiga is dedicated to helping clients streamline their hardware production workflow. The company’s newly-launched marketplace enables customers achieve just this, by condensing component design, manufacturing and shipping into one easy-to-use online portal.
Jiga’s platform allows clients to upload 3D models and receive quotes in seconds, before being contacted directly by suppliers with part optimization tips. During the process, user files aren’t visible to anyone other than the chosen manufacturers which sign strict NDAs regarding product design, protecting the IP of customers.
Already, the company has produced and shipped over 30,000 parts for clients like Netafim, Dollar Shave Club and Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI), reducing their costs and lead times in the process. In future, given the supply chain disruption caused by COVID-19, Jiga anticipates that it will be able to carve out a market niche, by cutting out the ‘middle men’ and connecting customers directly to trusted suppliers.
Mapping Jiga’s trajectory
Although it’s too early to judge whether Jiga will be able to compete with better-established marketplaces, the firm does have the leadership and backing in place to make a good fist of it. Company Co-founder Assaf Geuz was previously CEO of 3D printing firm Supersize 3D, while fellow Co-founders Adar Hay and Yonatan Wolowelsky have industry know-how that should stand them in good stead.
Importantly, Jiga also has the support of perennial start-up backer Y Combinator, which boasts a strong track record when it comes to funding promising printing-related firms. In the last few years alone, the accelerator has financed Relativity Space and invested in Mighty Buildings, companies that have gone on to grow significantly since.
Obviously, Y Combinator’s support doesn’t guarantee success, and it also financed the ill-fated Voodoo Manufacturing in 2017, but it does demonstrate Jiga’s potential. Similarly, given that outside the world of 3D printing, Y Combinator has invested in world-renowned firms like Airbnb, Twitch and Dropbox, its reputation for backing prosperous start-ups is evidence in itself that Jiga’s future is in the right hands.
Battling for on-demand supremacy
Jiga’s new platform is now essentially in direct competition with a number of well-established online marketplaces that offer a similar suite of production services.
Xometry is well-known for its on-demand offering, and it has consistently sought to expand its online RFQ Marketplace portfolio. In September last year, for instance, the firm added ExOne’s binder jetting services to its platform, allowing its clients to order parts made from a variety of new durable metals and composites.
Similarly, Protolabs opted to add a new cobalt chrome superalloy for its metal laser sintering service in June 2020. The enhanced heat, wear, and corrosion-resistant is designed to meet the needs of customers in the oil and gas industries, where it’s not possible to produce customized parts using conventional methods.
Interestingly, the segment has also witnessed a degree of market consolidation recently, with 3D printing service Stratasys Direct Manufacturing, choosing to offer four new materials to Xometry’s customer base. The deal between the firms has enabled Xometry to build on its SLS manufacturing capabilities, and expand its suite of client services.
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Featured image shows two parts produced using Jiga’s 3D printing service. Image via Jiga.