The new Shapeways and Hasbro partnership SuperFanArt allows fans of My Little Pony, Transformers, Dungeons & Dragons, Monopoly, Scrabble, Dragonvale and G.I.Joe to create and sell their own 3D printable designs through the 3D printing marketplace.
The internet exploded last month when Shapeways announced a new partnership with Hasbro to launch a pilot program that would sell fan created My Little Pony art, and that it would allow the artists to actually share in the profits. Many suspected that the program would eventually be expanded to other Hasbro properties, so this wasn’t a huge surprise. But it wasn’t expected to expand beyond My Little Pony this quickly, or with so many Hasbro brands all at once.
In order to sell your models, you simply need to upload your Hasbro product design to Shapeways. You need to set your design to “Display to Public” and “Not for sale” and tag it with the appropriate Hasbro property. Once your model is reviewed and approved, Shapeways will email you an artist’s agreement that you simply need to respond to via email. From there it’s just like any other model uploaded to Shapeways, you select the materials that you want it to be printed in and a retail price for each. If you already have models up on Shapeways you can simply re-tag them appropriately and follow the standard SuperFanArt upload steps.
Other than the waiting period for the licensing artist agreement, the program works pretty much the same as any other original models that you’ve uploaded. You still retain ownership of the design, however you are only permitted to sell it on Shapeways. Once you select the material that you want your model printed in Shapeways will give you a base price that includes their service fees, material costs and the Hasbro licensing fee. From there you simply adjust the price up to the profit margin that you want.
The new Hasbro SuperFanArt Marketplace has only been open for a few days and the fan-made designs have already begun rolling in. There were already plenty of My Little Pony products available, but they have been dwarfed by an onslaught of Transformers products. Consisting mostly of alternate heads and deluxe weapons upgrades, the new items are already displaying how many talented designers the TF fanbase has.
While Shapeways hasn’t provided any specific sales data on the pilot program, the rapid expansion with new Hasbro brands is a pretty good indication that it has been performing well. So far this is the largest licensing deal that has ever been made with a 3D printing company, but I do not expect that to last for very long. It’s a safe bet that other toy companies are watching this program very closely.