Dec 13, 2016 | By Benedict
Demetris Zavorotnitsienko, founder of Cypriot 3D printer developer Ilios 3D, has announced the imminent closure of the company, citing a lack of funding and general operational difficulties. Zavorotnitsienko is now putting the company and its intellectual property up for sale.
Just two months after the launch of the Ilios Beam 3D printer, the creator of that Stereolithography (SLA) machine has announced the immediate closure of his company due to a lack of funding, difficulty finding investors, and constant personal stress. In a heartfelt message posted on the Ilios 3D website, founder and CEO Demetris Zavorotnitsienko explained how attempting to keep the young company operational had driven him to despair.
“I can't keep hoping for the best at the end of each month,” Zavorotnitsienko writes. “18 hour workdays, constant stress, and lack of any sort of funding has drove me to bare minimum at the workshop and in my personal life in general since [I had poured everything] into Ilios including my heart [and] soul, making sacrifices, and [losing] gradually what i built over the course of time.”
According to Zavorotnitsienko, those with outstanding orders from Ilios 3D will receive their SLA 3D printers in due time, and the company founder has even suggested that extra accessories and upgrades may be thrown in with the last few orders as he looks to clear inventory of the now-defunct 3D printing company.
Ilios 3D unveiled the Ilios Beam SLA 3D printer earlier this year
In order to recoup some of his losses, Zavorotnitsienko is looking to sell the company in its entirety. This package would include mechanical designs for each Ilios 3D printer, electronic designs for boards and printer controls, assembled printers (if needed), Windows software and its source code, as well as Ilios firmware. The founder hopes that a new owner might still be able to make a success of the Ilios concept.
So where did it go wrong for Ilios 3D? According to Zavorotnitsienko, the company was founded to fill a gap in the market for an affordable SLA 3D printer, and to establish an additive manufacturing presence in the founder’s home country of Cyprus. By the founder’s own admission, however, that plan has failed.
Around four years ago, Ilios 3D ran a successful Indiegogo campaign for the Ilios HD SLA 3D printer, raising almost €18,000. That 3D printer was followed by the Ilios Ray, a “personal 3D printing laboratory,” after which Zavorotnitsienko teased the introduction of the Ilios Beam in April 2016.
Ilios 3D kept the Beam under wraps for a while, offering a big discount to customers choosing to preorder that machine. The SLA 3D printer was revealed a few months later, but it seems that an insufficient number of customers saw value in the €2,386 3D printer, despite its being around $800 cheaper than the Formlabs Form 2.
In his lengthy farewell message, Zavorotnitsienko explains that the funds raised from the initital Indiegogo campaign for the Ilios HD remained virtually the sum total of his finances, adding that several meetings with potential investors proved unsuccessful.
The founder of Ilios 3D also reserved a few words of criticism for the 3D printing industry as a whole, blaming “too much competition, Chinese knockoffs, cheap quick builds, [and] pointless identical crowdfunding campaigns” for creating a market that seems unable to sustain independent developers of 3D printers like Ilios 3D.
Ilios 3D is for sale, along with its intellectual property
According to Zavorotnitsienko, funds raised from the sale of Ilios 3D will be used to pay outstanding invoices and fulfill any remaining obligations to customers and suppliers.
Zavorotnitsienko concludes his message with the following statement: “I apologize to everyone for not reaching your expectations. I really tried to create something of value with the knowledge I have and perhaps make the world a bit better in my own way.”
Parties interested in purchasing Ilios 3D are encouraged to contact Zavorotnitsienko with their enquiries.
Posted in 3D Printer
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Ayush Bagla wrote at 12/14/2016 5:27:05 PM:
Im happy your xxxxxxxx.. I along with 3 other users got scammed by you and trusted you. Your blaming competition and cheap stuff.. You made garbage and sold garbage. Investors wont back you cause your not a nice person to even talk to. You have no professional experitise in this subject your business was smoke and mirrors
I.AM.Magic wrote at 12/14/2016 7:36:29 AM:
I wish you the best buddy. I know exactly what you have been through. Everything will be alright.