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Doing What Was Once Unfathomable

by Pete Basiliere  |  October 20, 2016  |  Submit a Comment

Located in a vibrant, evolving, innovative Silicon Valley neighborhood, FATHOM is a little known company that you need to know about.

On the surface, FATHOM provides 3D printing equipment and manufacturing services to major tech companies in the Valley and beyond. Its history is impressive enough: Founded in 2008 as a distributor of Objet 3D printers, it picked up the Stratasys line when the two companies merged.

By 2012 FATHOM had established its first production center and today is #1,279 on the INC magazine Top 5000. Today it employs nearly 70 people and is physically expanding its operations in Oakland CA. FATHOM’s 2015 revenue was $13.6 million (about one-third from 3D printer sales and services), capping 3-year growth of 302%.

FATHOM also operates in Seattle and is evaluating the idea of local hubs in other high tech metropolitan areas that blend the best of old line manufacturing with innovative additive manufacturing. (Boston, maybe?)

Personalized Sprinting Shoes for 2016 Olympian Jeremy Taiwo


Source: FATHOM & Brooks


You may be thinking to yourself, why is a 3D print service bureau a company that I need to know about? Well, despite offering prototype fabrication, direct digital manufacturing and low volume production, FATHOM does not consider itself a service bureau.

Co-founders Rich Stump and Michelle Mihevc think of FATHOM as an ecosystem that offers advanced manufacturing services. And 3D printers from Stratasys and, now, Nano Dimension.

I visited FATHOM last month, shortly after they one of the first “DragonFly 2020” 3D printers from 2016 Gartner Cool Vendor Nano Dimension. The DragonFly was set up in what was then an otherwise empty room that was undergoing finishing touches prior to the influx of more equipment.

The DragonFly 2020 is a printed circuit board (PCB) 3D printer that uses an inkjet printing and curing system to produce multi-layer circuit boards. As a result, designers to do what was once unfathomable, if you will: use nanotechnology conductive and dielectric ink to prototype PCB development, produce finished boards and shorten the time to market.

DragonFly 2020


Source: FATHOM & Nano Dimension


FATHOM will be using the Nano Dimension device in its service operation, just as it does with Stratasys printers, along with conventional manufacturing systems. Using the DragonFly 2020 as well as selling it means FATHOM’s technical and support team will have hands-on experience with which to help customers not simply troubleshoot the device but also leverage its capabilities for printing electronics.

FATHOM’s 2,300+ customer base is wide and varies with its locations: electronics and biology, automotive and aeronautics, packaging and casting. By bringing Nano Dimension to the States and initially to Silicon Valley the opportunity for FATHOM to expand its market is sizable.

Additional Resources

Category: 3d-printing  technology-and-emerging-trends  

Tags: 3-d-print  3d-print  3d-print-service-bureaus  3d-printer  3d-systems  additive-manufacturing  advanced-manufacturing-services  brooks  cool-vendor  fathom  michelle-mihevc  nano-dimension  rd  rich-stump  simon-fried  stratasys  

Pete Basiliere
Research Vice President
12 years at Gartner
18 years IT Industry

Mr. Basiliere provides research-based insights on 3D printing and digital printing hardware, software and materials. Mr. Basiliere's Maverick research coined the term Generation AI, people born after 2010 who will not know a world without application intelligence in their lives. Read Full Bio

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