Dec 3, 2015 | By Kira
Vancouver, Canada-based bionics company Wiivv Wearables believes that in today’s ‘on-demand’ world, one shoe fits none, and that not only should our body gear be completely optimized and tailored to our individual needs, it should actually lengthen and enhance our quality of life. To that end, they’ve developed a proprietary customization engine that can be applied to any part of the human body, digitally capturing 3D information and producing biomechanically enhanced, 3D print-ready files in just seconds.
This ‘Adaptive Manufacturing System’, which they claim is the world’s fastest product customization engine, has just earned the company funding to the tune of $3.5m from several major investors, and through an upcoming Kickstarter campaign, Wiivv hopes to bring their first 3D printed product, BASE, to market and launch us firmly into the era of mass customization. Investors from the seed funding round include Eclipse VC, Real Ventures, Evonik, MAS holdings, and first-time investors Asimov Ventures, a seed and early stage VC focused on 3D printing and robotics.
We first wrote about Wiivv Wearables last summer, when chemical company Evonik invested in BASE, biomechanically optimized, custom-fit 3D printed insoles that can be ordered directly through a smartphone. Customers take just three photos of each foot using their smartphone camera, and upload them to Wiivv’s proprietary customization engine, which then analyzes the images based on biomechanical research, and translates them into 3D print-ready files. Those files are then sent to one of their 3D printing facilities, and 3D printed in polyamide 12 from Evonik. The final product promises to correct minor alignment issues, increase comfort, and help athletes improve performance.
Through a Kickstarter campaign for BASE to be launched in early 2016, Wiivv wants to build a community of early adopters for 3D printed, custom-made body gear. However, their vision goes well beyond 3D printed shoe insoles, as their newly-developed suite of technologies surrounding the Adaptive Manufacturing System can be applied to any part of the human body in order to produce biomechanically enhanced 3D printed wearables.
"The technology we have created is our foundation, but ultimately our vision is to add 10 active years to peoples lives," said Shamil Hargovan, CEO of Wiivv. "Through our Kickstarter campaign, we hope to bring our first product to market with a community of Wiivv's earliest adopters - those who feed our vision of giving people the power of customized, body-perfect gear."
"Wiivv is at the forefront of mass customization, a new approach to traditional manufacturing that is on par with the 'on-demand' world we live in today," said Alan Meckler, Co-Founder and General Partner at Asimov Ventures. "Wiivv is poised to serve as the gateway for body-part specific telemetry, and made-to-fit gear using a cutting edge adaptive manufacturing system. Their team and bold vision exemplify the kind of partners we choose to work with."
Shamil Hargovan and Louis-Victor Jadavji, founders of Wiivv.
In addition to the investors mentioned above, other notable backers include Vyomesh Joshi, former EVP of Imaging and Printing at Hewlett Packard; Relentless Pursuits Partners, co-founded by Canadian sports icon and Olympic gold medalist Simon Whitfield; and FIT Technology Group.
Furthermore, the growing team of 20+ Wiivv employyes includes leaders fro HP, EA, Google, Apple, Nike and 3D Systems, providing expertise in everything from mechatronics and biomechanics to 3D printing and more. The young company seems very well-placed indeed to usher in the age of individualized mass production and custom-fit body gear via 3D printing technology.
Posted in 3D Printer Company
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