“The only 3D printing company anyone’s heard of,” MakerBot, is laying off 20 percent of its staff for the second time in the last six months.
In a statement released today, the company blamed "market dynamics" and an inability to meet "ambitious goals." Makerbot is also moving out of one of two buildings it occupies Brooklyn manufacturing hub Industry City.
"We are facing tremendous challenges at MakerBot," CEO Jonathan Jaglom told The Verge. "Across the board throughout the industry we are seeing a very slow growth pace in the 3D printing space, and of course MakerBot is impacted by that as well."
Today's layoffs hit just months after the firm let go a previous 20% of their workers, and closed all retail stores.
Quartz's Mike Murphy has a take on Makerbot's downfall:
MakerBot was acquired by Stratasys, a large, industrial 3D-printing firm, for $600 million back in 2013. Up until that point, MakerBot arguably was one of the companies that could’ve disrupted Stratasys, if it had figured out how to move 3D-printing technology beyond something that could slowly make plastic tchotchkes into some sort of home-manufacturing device.
And from 3DPRINT.com, on the good and bad in today's news:
Somewhere between high and low points are those that strike a more uncertain tone for now. MakerBot’s fourth-generation line of Replicator 2X 3D printers will be produced through a collaboration with a contract manufacturer, while in-house teams in Brooklyn work on MakerBot’s current generation. As yet, no further details have been released regarding this contract manufacturer.
Here's the full announcement from Makerbot CEO Jonathan Jaglom.
MakerBot Reorganizes to Adapt to Market Dynamics and Prepare for the Future
Over the past six months, since I joined MakerBot as CEO, I’ve been incredibly impressed by the passion and talent within our company and community.
We have achieved a lot as a team, but we have also been impacted by the broader challenges in our industry. For the last few quarters, we did not meet our ambitious goals and we have to make significant changes to ensure MakerBot’s future growth and success. In order to lead our dynamic industry, we need to get back to our entrepreneurial spirit and address our fractured organizational structure.
Having had time to get deeply rooted in our business, understand our challenges, and learn the strengths of our managers, we have been working on a plan to move us toward a stronger future.
We have spent a lot of time evaluating the market and understanding our customers so we can make plans on how to move forward strategically. These decisions were not taken lightly. Today we will part with some of our exceptionally talented and hard working colleagues, and I’d like to thank them for their commitment and contributions.
Starting today, we are making significant changes including:
• Reorganizing our teams and reducing our staff by 20% globally
• Changing our leadership team to focus on our people and the MakerBot 3D Ecosystem
• Moving our R&D teams from Industry City in Brooklyn to our corporate headquarters at MetroTech in Downtown Brooklyn. This will bring our teams closer together, ensuring more collaboration and easier communication. The MakerBot Factory will remain in Industry City in Brooklyn.
• Setting a defined product development plan that is centered around building connected products within our ecosystem
• Working with a contract manufacturer to produce 4th generation products to save on costs and focus our teams at our factory in Brooklyn on our current generation of MakerBot 3D printers
I brought on Kavita Vora as our Chief of People to create a company and culture that is focused on our people. Nothing is more important to me. I have also bolstered our company by adding Nadav Goshen as our President. Nadav and his teams are focused on building out our world-class ecosystem and supporting our community better than we ever have. He will ensure that strategy around our product offering, ecosystem and brand are in full alignment.
For us to succeed, our employees, customers and community will be our #1 priority. I remain highly optimistic about MakerBot and I am excited about our future.