DBJ and Epson Invest in 3DEO Inc.
- Designing Manufacturing Industry Innovations with Metal Additive Manufacturing Technology -
- TOKYO, Japan, January 19, 2024 -
Development Bank of Japan Inc. ("DBJ") and Seiko Epson Corporation ("Epson") have invested in California-based 3DEO Inc.
3DEO is a North American startup with fully integrated services for the design and manufacturing of complex metal parts using its proprietary end-to-end 3D printing ecosystem of patented hardware and software. By partnering with customers on value-added design for additive manufacturing (DfAM)1 services, 3DEO accelerates production of innovative and competitive products in the aerospace, medical/healthcare, semiconductor and industrial markets.
In recent years, manufacturing process improvement and product innovation using metal additive manufacturing (AM) have been expanding, especially in the fields of aerospace, medical and healthcare, and semiconductors. In addition, the automotive and industrial equipment sectors have begun to utilize the technology to reduce development costs and time, reduce weight, and produce spare parts and functional molds.
On the other hand, in Japan, there is a strong belief in conventional metalworking based on precision casting, which has supported the growth of the machining and assembly industry, as well as the optimization of the supply chain in terms of quality and cost. Although there is a movement toward research and development of AM technologies and DfAM, the barriers to entry for implementation at production sites are high and, as a result, the supply chain is lagging far behind the trends of innovation.
This investment is made by DBJ, which promotes "technological innovation and reorganization of industry," and by Epson, which promotes "manufacturing innovation" under its Epson 25 Renewed Corporate Vision. The investment was made through the DBJ Startups and Innovation Fund,2 which is part of DBJ's Specified Investment Operations,3 as it will support 3DEO's business expansion in North America and Japan from a capital perspective and contribute to innovation and competitiveness enhancement in the Japanese manufacturing industry.
3DEO and the machines developed by 3DEO have the following features:
- Company Purpose: To empower customers to innovate, design, and scale unique products using 3DEO's patented technology and industry-leading DfAM capabilities. 3DEO enables engineers to unlock new opportunities in product design and development.
- Business Model: Fully integrated services of design, and manufacturing for metal 3D printing. In addition to providing DfAM training and expertise, 3DEO removes the high customer burden of learning and implementing AM processes at scale, using its proprietary technology.
- 3DEO's Unique Full Stack Solution: 3DEO's proprietary (supported by 18 patents) end-to-end technology platform-not just a 3D printer-consisting of software, metal 3D printers, robotics, materials, and manufacturing processes.
In connection with this investment, DBJ and Epson completed the procedures related to the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS)4 on December 14, 2023.
DBJ will provide hands-on support to 3DEO and work closely with Epson and other stakeholders to proactively support 3DEO in building its business and increasing its corporate value. In addition, DBJ will serve as a nexus for all parties involved, including the national and local governments and related private companies, and contribute to the social implementation of DfAM in Japan, aiming to contribute to the innovation and restructuring of the manufacturing industry.
- 1 DfAM: Design and design for 3D printing (additive manufacturing).
- 2 This fund was established to promote the creation and nurturing of startups and the development of innovation ecosystems under the Special Investment Operations category.
- 3 Special Investment Operations, established as an intensive but temporary scheme to supply growth capital from the perspective of promoting the competitiveness of Japanese enterprises along with regional revitalization, draw only a portion of the investment (industrial investment) from the Japanese government-enough to encourage the private sector to supply growth capital.
- 4 CFIUS is an organization chaired by the secretary of the treasury and composed of several related agencies. From the perspective of U.S. national security, CFIUS examines foreign investment in U.S. companies, businesses, and technologies.
Epson is a global technology leader whose philosophy of efficient, compact and precise innovation enriches lives and helps create a better world. The company is focused on solving societal issues through innovations in home and office printing, commercial and industrial printing, manufacturing, visual and lifestyle. Epson's goal is to become carbon negative and eliminate use of exhaustible underground resources such as oil and metal by 2050.
Led by the Japan-based Seiko Epson Corporation, the worldwide Epson Group generates annual sales of more than JPY 1 trillion.