Canon Europe, the imaging solutions provider, has announced a distribution agreement with 3D Systems, provider of 3D printing technology. Under the arrangement, Canon will market, sell and support 3D Systems' advanced manufacturing 3D printers, including the ProJet 1200, 3500 series, 4500, 6000 and 7000 in the UK and Ireland, with a view to rolling out across Europe.
Through the partnership, customers will have access to 3D Systems' advanced 3D printing technology underpinned by Canon's exceptional service and support. This partnership reflects Canon's ongoing growth strategy of expansion into new technology domains that deliver significant value to its diverse customer base and builds on the 3D Systems distribution agreement with Canon Marketing Japan announced in March 2014.
Focusing on prototyping for rapid product development, Canon will offer the 3D printers to its substantial customer base in the UK and Ireland, across the engineering, manufacturing and architectural market segments.
Enabled by advances in technology and driven by the demand from the manufacturing sector for increased production efficiencies and customisation, the 3D printing market is growing rapidly. Research and advisory company, Gartner, has predicted that end-user spending on 3D printers is expected to increase from $1.6 billion in 2015 to around $13.4 billion in 2018¹.
Jeppe Frandsen, Head of Production Printing Group, Canon Europe, said: "At Canon we're continually assessing new market opportunities where we believe we can make a difference to our customers. It's clear that, because of the potential business benefits it can deliver, 3D printing is one such opportunity. Not only does this add to an extensive technology portfolio that few can match, but we also believe we can deliver an exceptional sales and service experience to fully support our customers in this innovative and dynamic area of the market."
Frandsen continued: "This partnership, together with Canon's own significant investment in R&D, reflects both our long term commitment to 3D printing and our ongoing dedication to deliver advanced technology and support to our customers to help them improve the performance and profitability of their businesses."
"We are excited to team up with a proven and experienced partner like Canon Europe to expand our distribution across the UK and Ireland," said Michele Marchesan, Vice President and Chief Revenue Officer, 3D Systems. "Canon is a trusted provider of industry solutions with strong service and support, and we are thrilled to extend our advanced 3D printing technology to a wider range of customers and applications."
Canon will start selling printers from the 3D Systems advanced manufacturing portfolio in the UK and Ireland at the beginning of March.
¹Source: Gartner press release, 27 October 2014 - 'Gartner Says Worldwide Shipments of 3D Printers to Reach More Than 217,000 in 2015'