Dubai innovation body to tap US fund for 3D printing technology

Dubai’s government innovation body has teamed up with a US software company to tap a US$100 million fund aimed at start-ups in the 3D printing sector.

US company Autodesk is partnering with Dubai Future Foundation (DFF) to help provide financing for entrepreneurs across the region.

The two organisations announced on Sunday that the DFF is to identify businesses to receive cash from Autodesk’s $100m Spark investment fund.

The investments will benefit organisations that currently use 3D printing. The agreement also allows entrepreneurs and businesses access to Spark’s marketing and software development capabilities.

The move is part of the UAE’s plans, announced in April this year, to become a world hub for 3D technology – a process that the consultants McKinsey estimate will have a $550 billion impact on the global economy in the next 10 years.

The new technology enables companies to synthesise almost any three-dimensional object by building it up through successive layers from a computer code.

“3D printing technology will revolutionise the economic sectors that most affect people’s lives,” said Mohammed Al Gergawi, the vice chairman and managing director of DFF. “This includes construction, medical equipment and supplies, and even consumer products. 3D printing technology has taken centre stage in the global market, drawing attention from all major tech companies and R&D centres around the world as they work to accelerate its introduction into traditional markets, in addition to establishing exciting new markets,” he said.

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