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Resin based 3D Printers gain traction in Professional/Industrial markets in 2016

The worldwide Industrial/Professional* segment of the 3D Printing market again struggled in 2016, seeing -10% fewer printers ship for the year compared to 2015 mostly due to the difficulties on the polymers side in making headway into production and away from just prototyping. Polymer technologies making the most headway into the manufacturing sector for 2016 included resin-based, Vat Photopolymerization printers (most commonly known as SLA or stereolithography but also including many other sub-technologies) and polymer Powder Bed Fusion printers (which include not only SLS - Selective Laser Sintering - technologies but also newer technologies like HP's MultiJet Fusion). Resin based printers saw global shipments increase +8% in 2016, putting this category ahead of Material Extrusion as the top technology on this side of the market for the first time since 2000. Material Extrusion still dominates the total market (Industrial/Professional plus Desktop/Personal) however with the bulk of the Desktop/Personal printers being of this type.

"While 3D printing in metals has already begun crossing this chasm into production, plastics are still largely stuck in prototyping, This is especially true in Material Extrusion", noted Chris Connery, VP of Global Analysis for CONTEXT. When considering Desktop/Personal 3D Printers, a category which again saw growth in 2016, with +33% more printers shipped in this sub $5K category than a year ago, Material Extrusion still rules the market. This Desktop/Personal category of 3D Printers was once thought to be able to penetrate more deeply into mainstream consumer usage, but still largely caters to non-consumer markets such as education and even more and more into the professional realm, while still remaining popular with hobbyists. A notable trend has been the acceptance of Desktop/Personal 3D Printers for professional use over the last two years as this sub-$5K Desktop category remains the gateway to 3D Printing for many and an important part of the ecosystem. While the sale of Polymer based Industrial/Professional 3D Printers struggled again in 2016, metal-based systems again showed growth with both Powder Bed Fusion solutions and Directed Energy Deposition solutions seeing share gains. Powder Bed Fusion metal 3D Printers were up +17% while Directed Energy Deposition System sales were up +28% Y/Y.

Market leaders Stratasys and 3D Systems both saw fewer Industrial/Professional 3D Printers ship globally in 2016 than in 2015 with notable Y/Y increases coming from EnvisionTEC, privately held EOS, Concept Laser (with heavy new investment from GE) and SLM Solutions with all but EnvisionTEC having metal as part of their portfolio. EnvisionTEC showed some of the greatest growth Y/Y with a heavy emphasis on mass customization as opposed to mass production, evidenced by their focus on the Dental and Jewelry industries. Powder Bed Fusion solutions in Polymers saw a slight decrease in unit shipments for the year, with -3% fewer printers shipped in this category than in a year ago. New solutions on the powder polymer side which allow for faster or better throughput by the way of the use of multiple lasers (as for EOS) or new technologies for sintering powder (as for HP), show machine trends to be skewed a bit for the period however with overall growth still seen in this technology as evidenced by growing material sales. As the Polymers side of 3D Printing shifts some of its attention toward production, the industry still needs to prove itself in terms of part repeatability, production of isotropic parts and materials cost.

New products at element14

Development specialist element14 has launched tinyTILE (an Intel Curie module based board specifically designed for use in wearable and IoT designs for consumer and industrial edge products) and BeagleBone Blue (the latest offering based on the popular opensource BeagleBone from the Foundation, built specifically for use in the development of robotics and autonomous vehicles). Both products are available through element14 offices in Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, India, Ireland, Italy, the Netherlands, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and the United Kingdom.

ScanSource and Avaya come together to drive cloud adoption in EU channel

As businesses in Europe increasingly look to adopt cloud technologies, Avaya announced that telecom and video VAD ScanSource Imago will be the first wholesale distribution partner in the EU for Avaya's cloud solutions, through its offices in Belgium, France, Germany, Poland and the United Kingdom. Based on Avaya's Powered by IP Office, ScanSource will provide its reseller partners with cloud-based solutions they can market to their end-user customer base. The cloud market is expected to rise across western Europe at a compound annual growth rate of 23.2 percent between 2015 and 2020, according to market researcher IDC, with spending in the region forecast to hit €21.8 billion this year. Avaya's solutions leverage cloud technology to meet businesses' needs for highly efficient and cost-effective engagement and collaboration offerings, enabling them to move at the pace today's digital market demands.

Resellers will be able to provide their customers with the same rich communications experiences they would expect from Avaya solutions delivered on-premises but in a streamlined model that allows companies to better manage costs by eliminating up-front capital investments and upgrades. Channel partners will also benefit from the combined reach and market share of Avaya and ScanSource, enabling them to build innovative solutions for their end-user customers and deliver future-proof communications experiences. Businesses will have greater flexibility to react to changing market conditions and demands, and will be better placed to leverage emerging technology trends. What's more, ScanSource is Avaya's largest global distribution partner and is committed to providing an in-depth knowledge of Avaya's solutions and the tools and value-added services resellers need to grow their business.

According to James Vickerage, the president of ScanSource Imago, "ScanSource is committed to helping its channel partners maximize their business opportunity and deliver the best experiences to their end-user customers. This partnership with Avaya will enable us to give our partners the freedom to sell cloud-based solutions to their customers, while benefiting from the reliability and quality that is synonymous with the Avaya brand." While Ioan MacRae, UK managing director for Avaya, says: "As enterprises in Europe increasingly look to adopt cloud-based solutions, the EU channel has been calling out for more agile methods of meeting their customers' demands. By combining with ScanSource, we can more effectively reach the indirect channel, enabling resellers to leverage our cloud-based solutions and create innovative offerings that meet today's digital business needs. We look forward to developing this partnership and offering a wider range of solutions and services in a cloud-based model."

Mark Chlebek to Head Pan-EMEA Ingram Micro Division

Broadliner Ingram Micro has unveiled a change of leadership in its pan-EMEA division. Mark Chlebek replaces Robert Beck as executive director of this division, managing relationships with pan-EMEA vendor partners. Beck will "gradually withdraw from the day-to-day business", before ending his 25 year career with the distributor. A 20-year company veteran, having joined Ingram in 1997, Chlebek takes responsibility for "purchasing and business management" for regional vendor partners managed by the distributor on a centralised basis. As part of the EMEA senior management team he reports to global group president of EMEA Mark Snider. "I'm excited to have Mark Chlebek coming into this strategic role. Mark brings with him years of EMEA-wide experience driving innovation and growth for our business. I am looking forward to working with him in his new capacity", Snider says. "I'd like to take this opportunity to thank Robert Beck for his many years of service and dedication to Ingram Micro. I'd also like to thank him for volunteering to help with a smooth transition, ensuring Ingram Micro business will continue without interruption to our vendor and customer partners." Chlebek is but one recent promotion in Ingram management. In February the distributor appointed Jacek Murawski as VP of EMEA vender engagement, with Günter Schiessl and Jordi Muñoz reporting into him in roles overseeing the management of partnerships with volume and value vendors respectively.

Exclusive Group transforms leadership team
Network and security value distribution group Exclusive Group has restructured the business to exploit continued global growth and opportunities with two key promotional appointments. Julien Antoine, currently Group Director of Global Operations is taking the new position of VP of EMEA while Will Smith, currently Group IT Director increases his scope to become Group CIO. Julien Antoine's new remit as VP of EMEA recognises the need for increased scale and support to the Group's largest operating region, enabling the structure to flex and adapt to the challenges of a fast changing billion euro business unit. The promotion of Will Smith as CIO, recognises the importance of the Group’s digital transformation and the significance of IT and data intelligence in this journey. These enhancements to Exclusive Group’s leadership team complement the recent high-profile appointments of Stéphane Duplaix as Director of Strategic Global Alliances, and David Ellis as Group Director of Global Services. The senior leadership team now benefits from a wealth of successful entrepreneurialism, diversity and know how in building a highly agile global business structure, designed to deliver local value. "Our long-term success has always been centred on the ability to anticipate and adapt to disruption without diluting any of our value, and these important new positions will safeguard these unique strengths as we scale to new levels", said Barrie Desmond, COO of Exclusive Group. "Julien and Will bring huge energy and talent to the team and are fully committed to our VAST mission. These moves also recognise that we need to transform ourselves as well as transforming technology consumption and distribution if we are to maintain our disruptive position." "We are the only major VAD to be headquartered in Europe, and EMEA will always remain an important part of our growing global operations", said Julien Antoine. "Our value-adding principles are absolutely central to our continuing market relevance and our future growth throughout the region. There are exciting opportunities ahead as we continue to expand our services capabilities as well as market presence for Exclusive Networks and BigTec." "The Group IT function has doubled in recent years, making us well-positioned at the forefront of digital disruption to ensure we are creating value internally, and for customers, partners and vendors", said Will Smith. "Customer requirements are constantly evolving and we must continually address these while remaining efficient and easy to work with. I firmly believe that if you are not disrupting then you risk being disrupted."


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