Four Trends Innova Research Observed at 3D Printing Conference China 2018

Innova Research, a Shanghai-based market research and consulting firm focusing on emerging technologies, recently attended the Additive Manufacturing Conference & Exhibition of China 2018 held at Hangzhou World Expo Center from July 26-28. Four trends were observed at the exhibition.

Leading Chinese companies in the 3D printing market keep growing

The leading Chinese companies in the 3D printing market are mostly founded by previous university-based research teams, including those from Tsinghua University, Xi’an Jiaotong University, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, China Academy of Science, among others. Over the years, these research teams spun off dozens of 3D printing companies, which formed the backbone of the Chinese 3D printing industry today. On the interviews conducted at the conference with a number of the leading players presented, Innova Research was told that they made significant progress in the last three years, as their revenues are growing and product categories are expanding. 

Number of suppliers to the 3D printing material market grows tremendously

According to “3D Printing Opportunities in Materials,” an article published by Innova Research in 2017, 3D printing materials represent a large opportunity in the next five years, especially for high-end materials such as high-quality photo-sensitive resins. Accordingly, there were a large number of domestic 3D printing materials suppliers presented at the trade show, together with a wide range of 3D printing material products, including photosensitive resin, metal 3D printing powder, polylactic acid (PLA) and other degradable 3D printing materials, among others. Meanwhile, some leading Chinese polymer and other material suppliers started to pay attention to 3D printing materials. Some of them showed specialized and customized 3D printing materials at the exhibition.

Consumer 3D printers received less attention

In the past few years, the consumer 3D printer market did not grow as fast as most 3D printer makers expected. At the exhibition, most visitors paid large attention to commercial 3D printers and their applications in medical and other industry user cases, rather than on consumer 3D printers. Innova Research believes that 3D printers are still not ready to boom in the consumer market. 

Finding killer 3D printing application(s) is still the priority

At the exhibition, a large number of 3D printing applications were demonstrated in medical, construction and industrial design, among other areas. Some leading players chose to specialize in a few industry or medical applications or to introduce more cost-effective and better-performed 3D printing solutions. Meanwhile, most interviewees agreed that finding the killer application(s) is the key to further grow the 3D printing market in China.  

Richard Jun Li, the founder and general manager of Innova Research commented, “The Chinese 3D printing market has become active again after a period of silence, thanks to the continuous efforts made by the industry players who improved the technologies with both 3D printers and 3D printing materials and explored more and more 3D printing applications. Meanwhile, the development for the killer application(s) is still the priority task for 3D printing players in the next few years.”

About Innova Research

Innova Research is a market research and consulting firm focusing on emerging technologies. With the combination of both technology and market research experts, we offer world-class market and technology intelligence.  Driven by primary research, Innova Research’s market intelligence reports and consulting services help our clients to make the right strategic and investment decisions in the fast-changing technology world. Visit www.innovaresearchinc.com for more information.

Source: Innova Research