Certain themes have been trending on 3DPI recently, noticeably the growth being experienced by the manufacturers of industrial metal 3D printing platforms. As industrial uptake of the technologies increases exponentially, it doesn’t really take a rocket scientist to see the correlation. That said, it is reassuring to see the growth being reported by the individual companies.
The latest report comes from Germany-based SLM Solutions, which quotes
strong growth during the first nine months of 2014 and further boosting its new order intake rate. The news from SLM Solutions is that company revenue (on IFRS basis) of EUR 8,012 in the third quarter 2014 was 89.4 % ahead of the prior-year period (Q3 previous year: TEUR 4,231). When only considering the SLM technology, growth was even stronger with a 141.5 % increase to EUR 7,121 (Q3 previous year: TEUR 2,949). In terms of platform sales, these figures are dramatically up too, with the number of machines sold increasing over the period standing at 27 (previous year: 16). In the immediate future SLM Solutions will focus on selling consumables in this segment.
CFO Uwe Bögershausen commented on the results: “We boosted our growth rate further during the third quarter. Over the nine-month period, we have more than doubled our new order intake – the most important early indicator of our operating growth. And we are already at the level of the full 2013 year in terms of our total output.” During the period under review, new order intake amounted to 36 machines (9M previous year: 14 machines), including three orders for the flagship SLM 500HL product. As Mr. Bögershausen adds: “I regard the change in ordering patterns among major industrial customers as a particularly good sign: while only individual machines were ordered in the comparable period of 2013, five customers have already ordered multiple machines during the first nine months of 2014. We are seeing that the market for metal-based 3D printing is currently crossing a decisive inflection point: the growing deployment of our machines in industrial series production is proving to be a driver of new order intake and sales revenues.”
The company also reports that total output – the sum of sales revenue, inventory changes and other own work capitalised – grew by 57.1 % year-on-year to EUR 22,202 (9M previous year: EUR 14,131) due to the very good order book position. The CEO of SLM Solutions Group AG, Dr. Markus Rechlin, commented on trends during the first nine months of 2014: “We are implementing step-by-step the growth strategy that we announced at the time of the IPO, and we have already made good progress in this context. We have intensified our international sales activities, and driven ahead with research and development through strategic cooperation ventures. We aim to continue on this path – because our laser melting technology has the potential to revolutionise industrial production.”
CFO Bögershausen issued the following outlook for 2014: “On a current basis, we are assuming significant revenue growth and a solid adjusted EBITDA margin in the 2014 fiscal year. In terms of new order intake, we are now anticipating that it will lie at the upper end of the targeted range of between 40 and 50 machines by the end of the year.”
For the full facts and figures, interested parties can go here.