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3D Printing: A Global Strategic Business Report

Global 3D printing market: $4.5 billion industry by 2018

The global 3D Printing market is projected to reach US$4.5 billion by 2018, driven by the development of innovative printing techniques, expanding application areas and declining cost of systems and consumables.

3D printing is a transformative technology used in the manufacture of a wide range of tools, parts, and appliances through the simple use of a digital model. Creating prototypes of new products represents the major commercial application of 3D printing, while direct digital manufacturing using the technique is limited to short production runs in few industry verticals. Market outlook in the 3D printing market is bullish with technology advances expected to drive market growth. Expanding application areas and funding support from government agencies are also expected to spur demand for 3D printing systems and services. Rising use of 3D models, ability to create customized products and declining cost of 3D printing systems and materials are encouraging the adoption of 3D printing as a replacement for conventional prototyping and manufacturing processes in consumer and professional markets.

The United States represents the single largest market for 3D printing products and services with growth driven largely by the availability of low-cost printers and increased adoption among hobbyists and entrepreneurs. Government support for 3D printing technologies as a means to stimulate growth in the domestic manufacturing sector also bodes well for the markets growth. A key benefit of 3D printing is localized manufacturing, which represents a huge opportunity for developed nations that have outsourced manufacturing operations to low-cost destinations in the developing world.

While developed regions such as the US and Europe have been at the forefront for developing and adopting 3D printing technologies, the volatile economic environment in the past few years has turned the focus onto emerging markets including China and India. Asia-Pacific represents the fastest growing regional market for 3D printing products with a projected CAGR of 21.4% over the analysis period. Growth in the market for 3D Printing Services is forecast to be driven by the rising demand for online 3D printing-as-a-services, owing to the spurt in demand for consumer 3D printer systems.

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