According to SmarTech Analysis the global additive manufacturing market grew in 2019 to over $10.4B crossing the pivotal double-digit billion threshold for the first time in its nearly 40-year history.
However, while several complex factors contributed to a second year of slowing growth rates in the industry, long term opportunities for the high-profile collection of technologies remains encouraging. Furthermore, while smaller and new entrants to the market have driven growth the past several quarters, SmarTech believes that larger firms who have properly filled out their product lines will be the main revenue drivers in the future.
The analysis within the 2020 Additive Manufacturing Market Outlook and Summary of Opportunities report focuses on providing segmented market data and insights for the metals, polymer, and ceramic additive manufacturing segments, while highlighting influential activities across key AM markets including aerospace, healthcare, automotive, service bureaus, and emerging opportunities like consumer goods, energy, and industrial.
SmarTech’s report said that overall growth rates on a quarterly basis for the market dipped during the middle of the year after a relatively strong first quarter and the market declined just as additive technologies began to truly start penetrating into applications and markets associated with production and manufacturing rather than prototyping, product development, and research.
SmarTech believes that there are now two distinct ‘zones’ of market activity with very different rules for success, and while the industry as a whole continues to evolve into a higher echelon market involved with manufacturing, many competitors must mature in terms of offerings and capabilities before significant growth in this market can be achieved.
Smaller, more agile players have provided much of the growth across the AM industry during 2019, magnifying a trend that has been playing out over several consecutive quarters. These companies have seen success due to advantages of having technology platforms more focused on the future customer while larger players remained bottlenecked by efforts to industrialize products and platforms of the past to meet current demands.
SmarTech says the “fringe” market growth driven by a stream of small startups isn’t sustainable and that at some point, firms must mature into accountable, profitable organizations that can be effective at delivering mature solutions to customers in a timely fashion.
SmarTech anticipates that while the collective groups of new, nimble, VC-backed companies in the industry will continue to help drive growth for the foreseeable future, the largest established players who have invested into providing a diverse set of additive solutions which can be readily implemented into a broader chain of manufacturing processes will eventually return to driving market revenue.
Forecast metrics presented include:
–printer installations, revenues, and unit sales by print technology in primary tracked industries, as well as geographical metrics
–hardware vendor shares by print technology worldwide
–global hardware metrics split by printer classification (low cost/prosumer units used professionally versus high-end industrial machines)
–material shipments and resulting revenues by print technology and material family and geography
–additive manufacturing software revenues by software type
–additive manufacturing parts printing services revenues by industry and primary material family
All presented data includes forecast projections on a ten-year period.
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