Protolabs (NYSE: PRLB) has purchased a new manufacturing facility in Brooklyn Park, Minn., the latest step the digital manufacturing company has taken to expand its prototyping and low-volume production capacity. The company has also recently invested in additional manufacturing equipment for both its American and European facilities to support business growth.
The new 152,000 sq. ft. Brooklyn Park facility will be expanded by another 50,000 sq. ft. and used primarily for CNC machining. About 225 jobs at Protolabs’ Plymouth, Minn. plant will relocate to the Brooklyn Park building, enabling the company to expand the injection molding capacity in the Plymouth facility to support increased customer demands. The new Brooklyn Park plant is scheduled to become fully operational by the end of 2018.
Over the past 12 months, the company purchased more than 75 CNC mills and 25 injection molding presses in the United States.
CNC machining in particular continues to grow industry-wide. Protolabs’ machining service, for example, grew more than 27% in 2017 to over $100 million. This capacity growth illustrates the continuing digitalization of manufacturing processes that has made the economics of on-demand production possible.