When Greg Mark takes his 3D printer to VCs he gets blank stares. The Boston-based CEO of Markforged, a 3D printing company that specializes in printing carbon fiber and metals, has found that few of them could understand his technology.
That’s why he turned to Microsoft Ventures, Posche, and Siemens-backed Next 47 for his next $30 million for his Series C. These industry-backed VCs understood the problems associated
The company is currently delivering a system for complete metal forging. The system, which involves putting metal into a very powerful microwave, is a hit with industrial partners but is confusing to those who think 3D printing is basically teaching a robot to squirt out Yoda heads.
The company has raised a total of $57 million since launch. The company is profitable and is selling printers faster than it can make them with revenue growth at 300 percent.
There are a number of other metal solutions on the market including massive systems from 3D Systems designed for industrial use. Markforged makes a nearly desktop-sized 3D printer and has discovered that its customers are printing finished parts in metal and factory jigs for CNC cutting and part holding in carbon fiber. By integrating both metal and plastic into the workflow they are able to reduce the times it takes to get to a finished part.