3D Systems Corporation (NYSE:DDD) Focuses on Healthcare; Shares Tread Lower


Shares in 3D Systems Corporation (NYSE:DDD) lost 6.23% to close Wednesday at $15.65. That fall came after another decline of 6% the previous day, and the stock is now well past its 20-day and 50-day averages.

Is the stock price of the company reflecting the highly competitive environment in the 3D printing industry?

Last month, General Electric snapped up two European 3-D printing companies for a total of $1.4 billion. The companies, Arcam and SLM Solutions, make machinery that can print metal parts to be used in aircraft components. “Eventually, companies here are going to hit escape velocity in terms of scale,” GE Chief Executive Jeff Immelt said, referring to the makers of additive manufacturing machines. “We want to be one of the companies that does that.”

Only time will tell whether this is a negative (read: competition) or a positive (read: buyouts) for the smaller players in the 3D industry.

3D Systems Corporation (NYSE:DDD) moves into healthcare

3D Systems is however, charting a new course for itself. It is moving away from 3D printing for consumer modeling and instead targeting 3D printing for production and end-use for clients.

“Rapid prototyping was the original application for 3D printing and will continue to be an important part of our business,” said 3D Systems’ President and CEO Vyomesh Joshi in September. “However, we believe we have the technology and assets today to make 3D production real and provide profitable growth for our company.”

The company now provides a range of new healthcare products.

Its technology was used recently in a complicated, 15-hour spinal surgery of national sled hockey champion Mark Weimer by Dr. George Frey of Mighty Oak Medical in Englewood, CO.

“3D Systems used Weimer’s CT scan data to generate a 3D model of Weimer’s spine that accounted for his natural anatomy as well as the foreign structures added in previous surgeries. Using this information, Dr. Frey was able to design his approach and plan the navigation required to safely address and avoid critical regions,” the company said.

Surgical guides, along with a reference model of Weimer’s spine, were 3D printed by 3D Systems on a ProX® 800 Stereolithography (SLA) printer using a plastic material suitable for use in the operating room.

Technically, shares in 3D Systems may have bottomed out after their long decline from a high of $97.28 in 2014.


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