Danish robot 3D construction printer company COBOD International A / S, which produces large 3D printers for robot printing of buildings and wind turbine towers in concrete, submitted the financial accounts for 2020, which show that COBOD fiscal 2020 results generated profits of 9.3 million DKK (about €1.25 million), being profitable for the second year in a row after growing almost 100% (from 4.9 million DKK, about €650,000)*.
The accounts can be seen here. This is a huge achievement for construction 3D printing, showing the business is viable, especially as the company reports even higher growth in 2021 (when it undertook even larger projects), despite Corona, and promises to more than double revenues again this year. It is made even more significant by the fact that the financial data has been released publicly, still somewhat of a rarity in the young AM industry. The accounts also show that the company’s order intake for the first few months of 2021 exceeded the total order intake for the whole of last year.
In 2017, Danish COBOD 3D printed Europe’s first 3D printed building, The BOD in Nordhavn, Copenhagen. Since then, the company has emerged as one of the globally leading companies within 3D construction printing. COBOD’s 3D printers are behind a number of records including the world’s first 3D printed concrete wind turbine tower together with GE Renewables, as well as Europe’s first 3D printed two and three-story buildings, India’s first 3D printed two-story building, and 3D printed buildings in Africa. The 3D printed buildings made by COBOD’s printers have gained considerable global attention, and videos of Europe’s first 3D printed two and three-story buildings have thus been viewed ½ million and 1.6 million times on Youtube.
Henrik Lund-Nielsen, founder and General Manager of COBOD, confirmed that the order intake has been even greater in the time after New Year despite the COVID-19 pandemic: “Just over 3 months into the new year, we have actually received 200% of the order quantity for printers received throughout all of 2020, so we are sure that we will continue our significant growth well into 2021, when we will at least double again. The good result is not least due to our large global customers and in 2021 they will continue to play a key role in our growth, together with smaller more entrepreneurial companies wanting to be part of the future. Due to the high growth, we have had to increase our manpower to more than 40 employees and at the end of this year, we expect to be around 60.”
COBOD counts some of the world’s largest companies as customers, including American GE, French LafargeHolcim, the world’s largest producer of cement and concrete, L&T Construction, India’s largest contractor group with 135,000 employees, and PERI Group, a globally leading German supplier of formwork equipment and scaffolding for the construction industry.
In 2018, COBOD succeeded in getting PERI in as a minority shareholder, and PERI expresses similar satisfaction over COBOD’s 2020 result and the growth: Dr. Fabian Meyer-Brötz, Head of Robot 3D Construction Printing at PERI Group, said: “When in 2018 we decided to invest in a manufacturer of 3D construction printers, we did so because we believed that automated robot 3D printing of buildings would become an important part of the future of construction. It was also crucial for us to find the company, that had the best technology and the most talented people. COBOD’s growth, financial results and performance since then have shown that our assumptions were correct, and that we looked right with regards to COBOD as the leading 3D construction printing company on a global level”.
*This article was updated on April 8th to correct a conversion error. COBOD revenues in euro for 2020 amount to €1.25 million, growing from €650,000 the previous year, instead of €125,000 and €65,000 as had been written initially. The DKK amount is correct. This makes COBOD’s achievement even more impressive as very few companies in the world of 3D printing with new materials (such as cement) have achieved this (or any) level of profitability.