The Prelude to the Formnext Forum in Austin.

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Title: My First Experience at Formnext Forum: Exciting Opportunities and Hidden Gems Await in Austin


Formnext Forum in Austin, Texas is just around the corner, and I couldn’t be more thrilled to be attending this inaugural event. As the world’s largest trade event organizer, Messe Frankfurt is venturing into the American market for 3D printing trade shows, and I’m eager to see the outcome. Having attended various additive manufacturing shows in the past, I’ve learned the importance of going in with a game plan. With a schedule that emphasizes talks and limited time for browsing, it’s crucial to identify the key companies to visit beforehand. In this blog post, I’ll share the noteworthy exhibitors that have caught my attention for this event.

Discovering a Rare Gem: 3D MicroPrint GmbH:

As an avid enthusiast of additive manufacturing, I’ve never come across a Micro Laser Sintering company before. However, the 3D MicroPrint booth has piqued my curiosity. With its unique technology and role as the only micro laser sintering company, I can’t miss the opportunity to explore their offerings. What stood out to me from their brochure was their ability to print moving parts without any additional assembly, utilizing their innovative ‘print-as-one’ solution. Furthermore, I believe that micro-platforms hold significant potential in the industry, making this company even more intriguing.

Exploring Established Players and Merger Intrigue:

While some major players like Stratasys and Desktop Metal will not be present at Formnext Forum, it’s interesting to note that 3D Systems and Nano Dimension will be exhibiting. These companies, which have been actively involved in 3D printing applications for the electronics sector, are publicly traded entities—a rarity in the field. Their participation at this event adds to the intrigue surrounding the potential merger and also makes them must-visit booths. Their presence sheds light on the applications demanded by customers that aren’t fully met by existing pure play AM companies. It’s always exciting to witness the direction they’re taking.

The Rise of X-Ray and CT Scanner OEMs in AM:

A fascinating trend I’ve noticed recently is the increasing presence of X-Ray and CT scanner OEMs at 3D printing trade events. One such company, Lumafield, specifically targets AM with its solutions. This demonstrates a convergence between legacy manufacturing companies and additive manufacturing, creating innovative opportunities within the industry. This is an area that deserves attention as the demand for serial AM production rises among military and large corporations.

The Crossroads of Traditional Manufacturing and AM:

Another exhibitor that has caught my eye is Nidec Machine Tool America LLC, an offshoot of a renowned Japanese electric motor manufacturer. This company exemplifies the entry of traditional manufacturing players into the AM sector. Additionally, Indo-MIM, a metal injection molding company, has extensive AM operations and has the potential to make a significant impact in this field. It’s clear that this area of the AM sector is gaining attention, given the urgency surrounding military and corporate interest in serial AM production.

The Hidden Gems:

Apart from the well-known players, little-known companies like SolidCAM Inc. and newcomer Metafold 3D are also worth exploring. These under-the-radar exhibitors often shed light on the unique applications demanded by AM customers that are not catered to by mainstream AM companies. Their presence adds a sense of anticipation and excitement to the event.


Formnext Forum in Austin presents a fantastic opportunity for Messe Frankfurt to test the waters of the American 3D printing trade show market. Having attended various AM shows in the past, I understand the importance of planning ahead to make the most of the event. Through my research, I have identified some remarkable exhibitors that I’m excited to see. From the unprecedented Micro Laser Sintering company to the convergence of legacy manufacturers and AM, Formnext Forum promises an intriguing mix of established players and emerging talents. I can’t wait to experience the energy and innovation at this inaugural event and share my insights with you.

I can’t wait to attend the Caracol Open House on Monday, the 28th. I’m really excited to see what it’s all about and I promise I’ll give you all the details afterwards. The event will also have some other big names exhibiting, such as ADDiTEC, Farsoon, Velo3D, Markforged, and SLM Solutions. It seems like everyone in the industry is eagerly waiting for these companies to scale up so that there is enough demand for materials. This would then allow for a decrease in price across the board. Similarly, when it comes to parts, larger machines tend to use more parts on average. This would ultimately lower production costs in the long run. Therefore, newcomers like Seurat Technologies are just as important for the industry. The success of large format ecosystems is of great significance right now.

I’m particularly excited about the Keynote Addresses that will be given at the event. One of them is titled “Supply Chain Resiliency: Through Rapid Qualifications, Workforce Development, and Turnkey AM Solutions” and will be presented by Dr. Gregory Hayes from EOS and Matthew Sermon from the US Navy. This talk will take place on the 29th, from 12:45-1:30 PM. The other Keynote Address that I’m looking forward to is titled “How to Manufacture 25 Tons of Metal Per Year, Sustainably” and will be delivered by James DeMuth, the CEO of Seurat.

Overall, I must say I’m really impressed with the lineup of speakers at this event. The topics they will be discussing seem to be perfectly aligned with the major issues that the industry is currently facing. If you want to stay up-to-date on all the latest news from the 3D printing industry and receive information and offers from third party vendors, make sure to keep an eye out for updates on this event.

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