Nov.5, 2014 | By Alec

There's a lot to see and do at this year's Web Summit in Dublin, Ireland, that is being held from 4 to 6 November. This giant tech event features a huge and diverse line-up of companies, start-ups and their exciting innovations.

But there's an important reason for Irish tech entrepreneurs and starters to attend, and that's the annual ESB Spark of Genius Award, that offers three main prizes of €25,000 for the most intriguing and promising start-up enterprises from Ireland. Entrants have been judged on the uniqueness of their ideas, their level of development thus far, and their potential for future growth.

And one of this year's first prizes was awarded to the fun and promising 3D printing company Love & Robots from Dublin. Love & Robots have won this prize thanks to a mixture of cool, fun and original approach to 3D printing services, as well as a keen business acumen. Three Dublin sisters - Emer, Kate and Aoibheann O'Daly, have combined their respective expertise in architecture, design, computer science and project management to create a web service that is different from most 3D printing services.

Love & Robots' online shop allows customers to pick out everyday items such as clocks or smartphone cases. But, unusually, they can choose to either order the fully made product via the post or simply to download the '3D design'. If they download the 3D model, they can simply send it to their nearest 3D printing shop to print it out.

As can be seen on their website, they offer a variety of custom-designed, original and intricate objects, like clocks, phone cases, jewelry and coasters. All of these have been created using high-quality 3D printing. And what's more, most of these can be customized to match your own preferences and colors. They, for instance, offer a range of pendants that can feature any letter combination you'd like.

This is all in line with the company's goals. As they stated, Love & Robots wants to try something different in a world driven by consumerism and mass production. Instead, they put the consumer at the center of product creation:

We enable customers to influence, re-design and personalise the products they buy. We then make all of our products with love and robots. By collaborating with our community of designers (love), and by using 3d printing (robots), we create beautifully-crafted, customizable, unique, 3d printed and locally-made products for design-lovers everywhere.

And their business venture is a big success. The company is already set to complete a €800,000 funding round and has signed a deal with Amazon, where Love & Robots' 3D printed objects will be sold through their website. As the company's CEO Emer O'Daly told the Irish Independent, 'We want to take this company global. We aim to set up a base in the US.'

While a great concept, their web services are obviously not completely original, as several slightly similar web stores are already in existence. They are, however, offering beautiful products and good services that are definitely worth checking out. Furthermore, the fact that this team of Irish entrepreneurs is awarded for their ingenuity by the mainstream technology industry is also a wonderful sign about where 3D printing technology is currently standing.

Posted in 3D Printing Company

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