General Electric (GE) is expanding its additive manufacturing (AM) portfolio by acquiring Arcam AB and SLM Solutions Group in transactions valued at $1.4 billion.
Both companies will be integrated into GE’s Aviation division and headed up by David Joyce, president and CEO of that group. Joyce will lead the effort to expand GE’s AM equipment and services industry, including 3-D printing and other industrial technology applications. GE says the new additive business will grow to $1 billion by 2020, and it expects $3 billion to $5 billion of product cost-out across the company in the next 10 years.
“Additive manufacturing is a key part of GE’s evolution into a digital industrial company,” says Jeff Immelt, chairman and CEO of GE. “Additive manufacturing will drive new levels of productivity for GE, our customers, including a wide array of additive manufacturing customers, and for the industrial world.”
Sweden-based Arcam AB invented electron beam melting machines for metal-based AM, and it produces advanced metal powders as well. Arcam’s main customers are in the realm of aerospace and healthcare. The company has operations in both Canada and the U.S. SLM is based in Germany and produces laser machines for metal-based AM for the aerospace, energy, healthcare and automotive industries.
GE has invested about $1.5 billion in 3-D printing and additive technologies since 2010, and the Arcam and SLM acquisitions will boost GE’s presence in the material sciences.
“We chose these two companies for a reason,” Joyce says. “They each bring two different, complementary additive technology modalities as individual anchors for a new GE additive equipment business to be plugged into GE’s resources and experience as leading practitioners of additive manufacturing. Over time, we plan to extend the line of additive manufacturing equipment and products.”
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