Israeli 3D printing startup Castor has high ambitions in the 3D printing industry and hopes to help businesses adopt and optimize additive manufacturing with its software platform. The company, which markets the “first intelligent 3D printing software for manufacturing,” was recently selected to be a part of the Stanley+Techstars Additive Manufacturing Accelerator hosted by Stanley Black & Decker and Techstars.
Launched last week, the accelerator program selected 10 startups from around the globe to leverage Stanley Black & Decker’s new Advanced Manufacturing Center of Excellence, Manufactory 4.0, in Hartford, Connecticut. The companies, which include Astroprint, Calt Dynamics, Distech Automation, Inventaprint, Kwambio, Mani.me, Micron 3DP, NanoQuan and Structure3D Printing, were each selected for the program because of their potential to move the AM industry ahead in innovative ways.
Castor Technologies, for its part, is eager at the opportunity to partake in the Stanley+Techstars Additive Manufacturing Accelerator as it says it will help it take its business to the next level.
“Castor is now in a phase of a product/market fit, looking for a cooperation with a large scale company, and looking for seed funding,” explains Omer Blaier, Co-Founder and CEO of Castor. “We feel like both things are exactly what this accelerator is all about. Having Stanley as a design partner and TechStars as a good preparation towards funding. We appreciate the opportunity given to us by being chosen for this program.”
When asked what facet of Castor’s business will be focused on in the accelerator, Blaier says that the company will primarily be looking to hone the business side of its 3D printing software platform. “Finding the right pricing, go-to-market strategy, etc. are some of the challenges we hope to address in the program,” he comments. “Stanley and Techstars both have a lot of experience in commercialization that we want to take advantage of.”
Castor’s intelligent software platform was developed to help businesses decide how and where to apply 3D printing in their manufacturing. As Blaier explains, at its founding in 2017, the company set out to address the lack of information and in-house expertise that are “bottlenecking” the adoption of 3D printing for manufacturers.
Castor’s decision support system, therefore, makes it easier for businesses to adopt additive manufacturing for production applications by helping them to determine if a part is suited for AM or is a better fit for traditional manufacturing. Ultimately, the Israel-based startup says it can help to reduce production lead times, cut back on expenses from limited quantities and increase flexibility for manufacturers.
“In five years from now, with more and more technologies popping up, the decisions of an engineer regarding what to print, and how to print it will just become harder,” Blaier adds. “We are here to make it easy.”
Now a week into the accelerator program—it ends in October 2018—Castor’s expectations of it have already been met. Blaier explains: “The program is structured in a way that the first three weeks allow you to meet around 80 mentors. It’s very intense and brings a lot of value. So we are trying to keep up the speed and create a relationship with the most updated people in the industry.”
Despite the obvious benefits of participating in the accelerator program, Blaier does note that his company has faced certain challenges in being co-located in Israel and the U.S. “Being an Israeli startup in an American program has its challenges,” he says. “Keeping customers satisfied and the family back home updated.”
Overall though, the young company is hopeful that the Stanley+Techstars Additive Manufacturing Accelerator will bring it new opportunities in the AM industry. In other recent news, Castor launched its software in Germany two months ago in a closed Beta mode.