The Maker Faire Rome, combined with the BIMU fair in Milan, has demonstrated that 3D printing and additive manufacturing technologies are booming at all levels across Italy. One of the reason’s why this is happening is because the rest of Italy’s industry has been depleted by decades of poor government and widespread corruption.
Sintesi Sud, a distributor of professional grade 3D printers and 3D scanners based in Avellino, in the Campania region, in a way, represents and leads the development and growth of professional level 3D printing services in Italy’s South, where the effects of the old industry falling apart are even more greatly felt. This does not mean that there are no other companies offering and implementing advanced 3D printing services, but that to survive and thrive, Sintesi Sud is able to offer only the very best technologies and quality services.
The company, founded in 2008 by Giovanni Marinaccio, focuses primarily on the dental and jewellery industries and is today a distributor of both Digital Wax Systems SLA systems and Stratasys’ Objet range of Polyjet 3D printers. It also sells and teaches courses on 3D modelling software such as Rhino and Exocad (specifically for medical and dental professionals). The company’s offering also includes Roland’s CNC and DLP 3D printing systems and a very large choice of top end 3D scanning systems from Artec to Riegl.
So it is no surprise that, when I met with Mr Marinaccio, at Maker Faire Rome (inside the Roland area) we began a friendly “duel” on knowledge of 3D printing technologies. After all his was one of the few companies at the event offerng professional level machines and I was one of the few people familiar enough with them at a show focusing primarily on open source electronics and desktop 3D printing. I could not say who actually won the contest (I did! ;-)) but Giovanni definitely left me speechless when he pulled out of the hat a video of him 3D scanning Italy’s current Prime Minister, Matteo Renzi, at a recent event in Venice (which hopefully he will send to me soon for publication on 3DPI).
For me, 3D printing and additive manufacturing represent Italy’s best (inventiveness, creativity, style) sprouting out of Italy’s worst characteristics (corruption, bad government and mafia). What happens here – as in many other places worldwide – is that the extremely difficult conditions that entrepreneurs have to face to grow their businesses create a natural selection where only those who can offer the very best technologies and the highest added value can survive. So while you will not find a solid and compact business landscape, what you will find is spot centres of excellence. By making AM technologies available and – most importantly – by educating others about them, Sintesi Sud, is helping more companies implement the best and most advanced technologies, thus contributing to ensure their survival.