Dec 4, 2015 | By Kira

Michigan-based Linear Mold & Engineering, one of the largest metal additive manufacturing services providers in North America, has had a majority stake bought out by motion control equipment maker Moog, who seems to have decided not only to step into the 3D printing industry, but to dive right in.

Although the terms of the investment were not disclosed, Moog has acquired a 70 per cent stake in the Livonia, Michigan company, which was founded in 2003 and was one of the earliest adopters of additive manufacturing technology. Moog retains the option to acquire the remaining 30 per cent of Linear in the future.

Linear provides engineering, manufacturing, and production consulting services to customers in the aerospace, defense, energy, and industrial sectors. As specialists in molds and tooling for plastic forming, the company purchased an EOSINT M270 3D printing system back in 2005, and quickly realized they could exploit the advantages of additive manufacturing for creating enhanced product feature sets, rapid design cycles and an extremely high level of customization.

As for Moog, the company designs, manufactures and integrates precision control components and systems for everything from military and commercial aircraft cockpits, to satellites and space vehicles, to power-generation turbines, Formula One motor sports, medical infusion systems, and more.

Like so many companies before them, they have come around to the fact that additive manufacturing allows the fabrication of precision, high-quality parts that would be difficult if not impossible to make through conventional means, while reducing overall costs, material waste, and production times.

“We are excited to welcome Linear to Moog,” said Sean Gartland, Vice President of Strategic Growth Initiatives. “We see significant potential for metal additive solutions in our core markets – aerospace, defense and industrial applications – in addition to the markets and customers that Linear is already serving.”

A privately-held company, Linear currently employs 120 people, and during the 12-month period that ended in September, reported approximately $21 million in sales, although Moog has said that it does not expect the acquisition to have any impact on its own earnings during the current fiscal year.

In 2014, the Linear announced that it would quintuple its direct metal additive manufacturing capabilities, adding up to 32 more DMLS and SLM systems over the next few years with the goal of 400+% growth. In addition to the EOSINT M270, they operate an EOS M280, an SLM280, as well as a few EOSINT 270s and EOSINT 280s.



Posted in 3D Printer Company



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