Oct 24, 2015 | By Kira

Auvergne, an administrative region in France and home to global tire manufacturere Michelin, this week announced a major financial boost aimed at securing the future of the metal 3D printing industry, valued at €6.3 million. Over €4 million of that will go directly to the joint venture Fives Michelin Additive Solutions (FMAS), a 50-50 partnership between the two French companies created last September that seeks to play an integral part in the globally expanding area of industrial metal additive manufacturing.

The project includes eleven mainly French partners including aluminum and metal powder producers Constellium and Eramet; additive manufacturing solutions experts FMAS, Dassault Systèmes and ESI; industrial end-users in the aerospace and automotive industries such as Zodiac Aéro, Safran, Fusia, Michelin and 3A; and finally research laboritories CNRS, Central Supélec and CPI. According to the Auvergne Regional council, the total cost of the project will be around €40 million over seven years, however the initial €6.3 financial boost will be intended specifically and exclusively for companies within the region such as FMAS.

Created in September, the Fives-Michelin joint venture made waves across the 3D printing industry. Michelin, founded in 1889, is one of the top three tire manufacturers in the planet, while Groupe Fives (around since 1812) is one of the oldest and most active industrial engineering specialists in the country, with experience in automation, aluminum, steel, cement and glass manufacturing, industrial process control, and the energy sector. FMAS is expected to concentrate on manufacturing and marketing industrial machines on a global scale and catering to a variety of sectors—with the automotive industry no doubt at the top of the list, alongside aerospace and medical applications.

According to Wohlers Report, the annual market for the metal additive manufacturing in 2014 stood at over €600 million, with an average growth of over 20%. “While additive manufacturing is already widely used by industrial manufacturers for plastics, metal 3D printing is still a rapidly evolving niche market,” said the Auvergne region. “This critical project for the region is based on a public/private partnership that has grown significantly in recent years…It’s a new way of working and making better economic choices for the future.”

The announcement regarding the Auvergne region’s investment was made October 20th during a session to discuss impending merger between Auvergne and Rhônes-Alpes. The new region will take effect January 1, 2016.



Posted in 3D Printer Company



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