Stock performance, IPOs and M&As
The study traces AM stock performance from its first wave in 2015 to today. 2021 was an excellent year for IPOs and the momentum is continuing, with further public offerings already in the pipeline this year. M&As too had a bumper season last year, with a record 47 deals netting over EUR 2 billion in total. Roland Berger sees the resultant influx of money driving constant change and incipient consolidation in AM. Revenue multiples show that AM companies are not traded at a bargain, but double-digit growth rates are clearly enough of an incentive for investors. Both early-stage and, even more so, post-IPO funding are therefore plentiful.
Fair values or overheated market?
The study presents a model to identify the main valuation drivers for
AM companies in the high-growth phase and terminal value when the companies mature in a stable market. Accordingly, fully understanding an AM company’s business model and its competitive positioning is seen as a crucial success factor.
Potential future disruptions in the additive manufacturing ecosystem
Citing ongoing innovation across almost every aspect of
additive manufacturing , the study points out that the industry is in a constant state of flux. Referenced examples include the trend toward stronger and more lightweight parts, significant changes in the surface area that can be subjected to laser exposure at any given time, and the way in which continuous liquid polymer resin printers are delivering faster print speeds. In all these areas and more, speed, productivity, resource conservation and quality assurance are rapidly advancing – all of which add to the overall complexity of the emerging AM ecosystem.
As AM gradually makes the leap from prototyping to genuine industrial production, the study notes its potential as a viable substitute for
conventional manufacturing . Although Roland Berger acknowledges that several hurdles must still be overcome before this happens, relentless and fast innovation is minimizing manual involvement and improving both repeatability and consistency as it does so.
For all the many question marks over this singularly dynamic industry, the study remains convinced that its future remains bright indeed. Given its inherent complexities, however, success for many companies will hinge on their ability to adapt to the very specific needs of each individual customer.