Yes, it’s sad to see a startup closing its doors and entrepreneurs going home after their dream wasn’t coming through. But I also must say that the “script was well written on the wall”.
I launched Kazzata.com about two years ago. When I launched it I was already in the end of a couple of months thinking process about what would be the strategy to enter the 3D printing industry. As my background was in digital stock photography marketplaces, my initial thought was to build a general purpose marketplace for STL files. Thingivers and Shapeways were already in the market. While I was checking the market few other general marketplaces started to emerge and I knew that I don’t want to be involved in what they were doing. Let’s admit it. Most of the general 3DP marketplaces offered childish products. It was obvious that their potential will not go beyond the makers’ community who wanted to test their newly bought 3D printer. Problem is that the makers’ community is limited in its size.
I was dam sure that it will take much more time for the regular consumers’ audience to enter into this market and to replace the limited buying power of the makers.
Then I decided to open a specialized marketplace for spare parts. No Yodas, no monsters no smartphone covers. Only spare parts. This was two years ago, when I launched the company with a partner. Since we are technical savvy we built a nice web site so manufacturers and makers will be able to upload spare parts. Indeed, few makers uploaded their reconstructed parts but manufacturers didn’t come. We wanted to attract mainly manufacturers not makers but they told us that they don’t want to lose control and upload their parts to a 3rd party web site.
So about a year ago we understood that 3DP marketplace is no longer viable business. Even for a specialized spare part marketplace. We then changed our business model to a cloud service and just now finished our MVP with funding from Fabulous (the 3DP EU accelerator).
Now the power is moving to the manufacturers. With our platform (which is a cloud service on their own web site) they can start sell physical products which for the long run, they keep as digital files only (no physical inventory). When a product is being ordered (and paid) the file and 3D printing instructions will be routed to a pre-approved – manufacturing grade – 3DP service bureau. The service bureau will be located in the closest proximity to the ordering customer as possible.
We are starting to recruit manufacturers and we hope that such a business model will be successful, and will attract manufacturers rather than makers for real commercial profits.
Now we are in the business of “supply chain management” instead of the marketplace business.
An amazing concept for future use of 3D printers is shown in this video. Basically it says that in the future it will be so easy and cheap to print anything that we will prefer to travel without our suitcase. When we arrive to any location we will print locally what ever we need.
Yes I know it will not happen tomorrow but eventually sooner than we think this will be the way we will travel with our luggage.
“Eytam Robotics approached me few weeks ago with a problem they had” says Noam Eshkol CEO and founder of Kazzata which is a 3D printing marketplace for spare parts . Eytam develops, manufactures and distributes high end educational robots. Their customer base are pupils in schools which are very happy with the robots that they program and operate, so they can learn the basics of robotics. The pupils are instructed to operate the robots only on the floor and not on a table. Why? because if on a table and when programing they entered wrong parameters and the robot doesn’t stop at the end of the table, it can simply fell to the floor, and sometimes the outer panels of the robot break.
Eytam robotics searched for a solution to supply spare parts for their first generation of educational robots which they don’t manufacture anymore but still want to maintain high level of service and thus need to keep an inventory of its spare parts.
“I am happy to say” says Noam, “that they chose the solution that Kazzata offer”. They uploaded their first generation robot spare part CAD files into the Kazata repository and now pupils and teachers are downloading the files and print it on their 3D printer only when they really need the part.
Kazzata solution enabled Eytam Robotics save the expenditure of investing in slow moving inventory while their customers still get immediate solution when they need to replace a broken panel of a robot.
About Kazzata: Kazzata is creating the world’s largest online CAD file repository and marketplace for spare parts, which will, through 3D printing, dramatically ease the accessibility of rare or obsolete spare parts for consumers and businesses, reducing frustration and productivity loss. Kazzata also solves the logistical and planning problems of manufacturers that have to supply aftermarket service parts by enabling on-demand 3D printing of parts. For 3D designers and engineers, Kazzata provides a way to monetize designs that are licensed through the site.
Our new venture Kazzata.com is all about disrupting traditional spare part supply chains with 3D printing technology on-demand.
I have just read an insightful article in 3D Printing Technology . I am quoting here two paragraphs but it is worth to read the full articles.
For 3D printing, almost any existing product sector could be disrupted, almost anyone can become involved, and almost any potential set of outcome scenarios may emerge, though confined to limiting variables that we will look at shortly.
It took the 3D printing industry 20 years to reach $1 billion in size. In five additional years, the industry generated its second $1 billion. It is expected to double again, to $4 billion, in 2015. This exponential growth rate is forecast to continue until at least 2025 by which time the industry will have reached up to $600 billion.
When I am talking and lecturing about the upcoming third manufacturing revolution, I know it will not occur tomorrow. But the signs are already here and we are moving now from individual 3D printers to an array of printers that together will form a mini factory, capable of utilizing various printing technologies, various materials (including metal) and obviously the much anticipated technology of printing a part that the electrical wiring is already inside.
The University of Texas – El Paso’s W.M. Keck Center for 3D Innovation just secured a $2.2M grant, from the US government’s additive manufacturing program America to develop just that.
For more information read an article from engineering.com: http://bit.ly/1ecRhhG
If you are a designer or manufacturer you are invited to upload 3D printing spare part design files to our marketplace: Click HERE to start.
I am happy to see that Microsoft is seeing the 3D printing future in a much brighter light now considering they were late to the Internet and missed the smartphone train, but it appears they are just on time for 3D printing.