3D printing company Carbon3D has closed a $100 million Series C investment round led by Google Ventures. The company intends to use this capital to further develop its technology with the goal of making 3D printing a core part of the manufacturing process.
Founded in 2013, Carbon3D’s aim is to help commercial firms move beyond basic prototyping and extend 3D printing into the actual manufacturing space. Targeted industries include aerospace, automotive, consumer electronics, athletic apparel, medical/dental, and industrial groups. The hope is that this will usher in a renaissance in how products are produced, thereby helping to reduce costs.
The dream of 3D printing has yet to be realized. Carbon3D’s approach is different from the traditional model, something which it describes as offering limited material choices, “mechanically weak” hardware parts, and untenably long printing times. Of course, when most people think about 3D printing, they are probably thinking about MakerBot or similar services
Carbon3D will invest in the printer device itself, specifically the hardware, software, and materials from which objects will be made. Just a few weeks ago, the company introduced the world to its 3D printing technology, Continuous Liquid Interface Production, or CLIP. Carbon3D promises it will advance the industry beyond basic prototyping and can produce a 3D object with a smoother surface finish than is currently available.
Ford Motor Company had been one of the early testers of CLIP.
Other investors in this round include Yuri Milner, Reinet Investments S.C.A., F.I.S., and previous investors Sequoia Capital, Silver Lake Kraftwerk, and Northgate Capital. Between its series rounds and the $10 million provided by the Autodesk Spark Investment Fund, Carbon3D has raised over $140 million.