General Electric’s Plan for 3D Printing with Metals

November 13. 2017. 5 mins read

When we first heard about 3D printing, it was a rumor floating around in the recesses of Hewlett-Packard’s (NYSE:HPQ) printer development teams. Someone had heard that HPE was actually printing chess pieces, something that sounded right out of Star Trek. Then when desktop 3D printing started gaining in popularity, people found that printing chess pieces just wasn’t that interesting after you had done it a few times. The ability to print any shape in plastic in small batches just isn’t that compelling. Sure, Adidas is now starting to use 3D printing to build customized shoes, but we’re just not seeing the sort of adoption that drives shareholder returns.

Look no further than the two 3D printing darlings that fell from grace. If you bought shares in Stratasys (NASDAQ:SSYS) and 3D Systems (NYSE:DDD) 4 years ago when we first started writing about 3D printing, you would have lost -82% and -86% respectively. If we look at the YTD returns for both of these stocks, SSYS appears to be showing some life with a +26% return while DDD has sunk -35%. The positive return from SSYS isn’t great considering that a

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