Royalty was present last week as a major partnership was created, bringing the innovation of the 3D printing marketplace to Southeast Asia. This occurred in the form of a franchise agreement between Materialise, based in Leuven, Belgium and UCT, headquartered in Hayward, California.
In an effort to expand and introduce 3D printing and the i.materialise online marketplace platform into areas still engrossed in traditional manufacturing procedures, Materialise and UCT signed an agreement in front of Her Royal Highness, Princess Astrid, Representative of His Majesty, the King of Belgium.
Available in the first quarter of next year, UCT will bring the i.materialise platform mainly to Singapore, a city once known as a hub for electronics manufacturing, and now making a comeback as the home to many promising new startups, as a byproduct of growth and innovation happening in the Asian technology sector.
With Singapore boasting one of the largest telecommunications networks in the world, and being famous as ‘the world’s easiest place to do business,’ UCT and Materialise have targeted some prime real estate for their 3D printing platform, in what should be a thriving scenario.
“i.materialise is dedicated to helping people to materialize their ideas, and in a way that’s what this franchise agreement is doing — giving even more creative individuals the possibility to turn their dreams into 3D reality,” Wim Michiels, Executive Vice President of Materialise says.
“Additive Manufacturing has the potential to revolutionize how things are designed, made and distributed, and can truly contribute to the realization of a better and healthier world. I see this collaboration with UCT as a great opportunity to bring quality 3D printing, and the benefits it enables, closer to home in South East Asia.”
The i.materialise online platform offers an entire range of solutions and services that go beyond just the 3D printing of designs, as the users can buy, create, share, and sell their own designs. The online marketplace offers a venue that’s not only inspiring, but fosters a sense of community.
As the magic of 3D printing spreads worldwide and enables both small and large businesses, as well as the individual hobbyist, to spread their wings and fly independently with making their own prototypes and setting up production, i.materialise and UCT are sure to be met with open arms in Southeast Asia and Singapore, a world-class city attractive to a vast array of manufacturers, designers, inventors, and more.
“UCT strives to bring the newest manufacturing solutions to our broad base of customers. We believe offering the i.materialise 3D Printing Platform through our new and expanded Additive Manufacturing Center in Singapore will offer our customers manufacturing choices previously unavailable to them,” said Lavi Lev, Senior Vice President of UCT Asia.
UCT customers are primarily original equipment manufacturers for the semiconductor capital equipment, consumer, medical device, energy, industrial, and flat panel industries. The partnership with Materialise allows the company to introduce 3D printing and all that encompasses it in a powerful way, using the UCT Additive Manufacturing Center in Singapore to offer facilitation of 3D printing to regional users.
“Our customers can confidently entrust their product to two companies who offer over 50 years of combined excellence and innovation. Furthermore, we are grateful to do this in a region that offers a stable business environment, a rich pool of talent and a government that enthusiastically supports advanced manufacturing technologies,” said Lev.
While Materialise is well known for and often in the headlines regarding providing biomedical and clinical solutions such as medical image processing and 3D printed models for pre-operative planning, the i.materialise platform is able to appeal to a wide variety of individuals and businesses.
What effect do you think this recent partnership will have on expansion of 3D printing into southeast Asia? Tell us about it in the Materialise and UCT Partnership forum over at 3DPB.com.