Carbon closed in a total raise of $200 million in Series D funding. The high-speed photopolymerization 3D printer manufacturing startup will use the additional capital to accelerate its momentum in disrupting traditional analog injection molding production techniques with connected, software-first, digitally-enabled design and fabrication capabilities. Specifically, Carbon intends to use the funds to fast-track its global expansion plans and product roadmap, and will double down on its deep commitment to enabling customers to move to real-world, mass digital production at scale.
The funding is supported by a unique mix of investors that directly align with the strategic direction of the company: global financial institutions Baillie Gifford (Scotland), Fidelity Management & Research Company (U.S.), and ARCHINA Capital (HK); strategic industry partners Hydra Ventures (the corporate venturing arm of Adidas), GE Ventures, and JSR Corporation; and Emerson Elemental (the environmental practice of Emerson Collective), a values-driven organization dedicated to removing barriers to opportunity so people can live to their full potential. The funding is also supported by current investors including Sequoia Capital, Silver Lake Kraftwerk, and Reinet Investments. Other investors are expected to be disclosed in early 2018.
“The age of digital 3D Manufacturing is here, and this funding – with this incredible group of global financial investors, customers, and partners – validates our vision to fundamentally change how the world designs, engineers, makes and delivers products,” said Dr. Joseph DeSimone, Carbon’s CEO and co-founder. “We are especially gratified that our mission and values came through as such strong criterion for this group. Since Carbon first introduced digital light synthesis, we have continuously pushed the boundaries and transformed industries, and are uniquely positioned to take digital manufacturing to an entirely new level. This funding will help us realize new classes of workers and business models, where product design and engineering is facilitated by cloud-based computing and a wide range of scanning, sensor, and simulation technologies that enable the creation of perfectly tuned – even personalized –products that have been previously impossible to produce.”
Founded in 2013, Carbon pioneered a revolutionary alternative to 3D printing, fusing light and oxygen to rapidly produce products from a pool of resin. Its novel approach combines connected, data-centric hardware with over-the-air software updates and innovative materials, enabling creators to design and produce previously unmakeable products, both economically and at mass scale. Carbon’s unique subscription-based model closely aligns it to its customers’ businesses – with every-six-week software updates, continuous education and training programs, and one-to-one customer service – to ensure optimal customer experiences and capabilities. This results in deep partnerships with customers, opening up new business models across a variety of industries, including automotive, consumer products, dental, and medical. The unprecedented adidas Futurecraft 4D is a proven example of the power of true digital 3D manufacturing today, creating unlimited possibilities for designing, engineering, making and delivering truly innovative products.
Peter Singlehurst, Investment Manager at Baillie Gifford said his company is “delighted to invest in Carbon on behalf of its client as Carbon is delivering on the long-standing but elusive promise of 3D manufacturing at scale”. He added that the company has an innovative business model and a first-class team, leading he and his team to believe that Carbon has the makings of a large, valuable, and important business.
Emerson Elemental Managing Partner Andy Karsner said that their support is tied to the belief in “the potential to enable a new class of workers and tools for 21st-century opportunities that strengthen our communities and the environment.” This investment gives us an opportunity to support Carbon’s growth and continued industry leadership, while measurably transitioning to more natural materials, more precisely and efficiently applied, for a more thriving world.” Emerson Elemental is also inspired by Carbon’s commitment to innovating environmentally sustainable supply chains, dematerializing and minimizing waste streams, while scaling engines of additive manufacturing that can support economic growth in communities everywhere.
JSR Corporation and Silver Lake Kraftwerk also showed enthusiasm. JSR, in particular, is helping Carbon enter the complex Japanese market believing their technology will play a crucial role in transforming manufacturing in multiple industrial sectors, especially in Japan and the Asia Pacific region more generally. Silver Lake Kraftwerk also believe that Carbon’s breakthrough polymers and processes will fundamentally change the way products are designed, built, and brought to market.