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3D Systems (DDD -4.7%) co-founder/CTO Charles Hull sold 500K shares on March 13. That leaves...

3D Systems (DDD -4.7%) co-founder/CTO Charles Hull sold 500K shares on March 13. That leaves Hull, 73, with only 461.5K shares in the company. 3D shares appear to be pressured by the news. (13D filings: I, II)
Comments (31)
  • He's cashing out on the future.


    Besides, it's pretty obvious that these things come to the market to exploit people's desire to speculate on the future.
    14 Mar 2013, 02:53 PM Reply Like
  • Isn't the CEO of the recently acquired company going to be the new CTO? So, the 73 year old CTO is retiring; no surprise here.
    Time to buy!
    14 Mar 2013, 03:17 PM Reply Like
  • This is a great observation. Look at the ages of the management. They are a lot older than I would hope a management team to be at this point in the company's position considering new emerging competitors from younger companies. This is an opportunity for the management to get some young progressive blood in the mix.
    14 Mar 2013, 06:00 PM Reply Like
  • Oh, come on, Paulo. How in the world would you know the man's reasons? You don't.


    The guy is SEVENTY-THREE years old. If he's spent the last decade of his life pouring all of his time and much of his money into DDD (or at least taking a reduced salary so that the company could grow), he's overdue for taking a little cash out. Maybe he wants a vacation.


    Even though the price of DDD went down after the 3-for-2 stock split, the net effect meant that Hull's stock was worth more. And by the way, stock splits ALWAYS send the share price of ANY company down in the short term. Even the vaunted Coca-Cola.


    And about all those silly people who love to "speculate on the future." Some of them bought Apple when it was not much more than a penny stock. They're not bothering to read your comments because they're on their yachts right now.
    14 Mar 2013, 08:35 PM Reply Like
  • There's a difference between someone holding a brand and barriers to entry, and 3D printing without any barrier.
    14 Mar 2013, 08:57 PM Reply Like
  • Let me ask you this, Oh Great One. How, exactly, does one create a brand. Before it becomes a brand, it's just another product, right?


    Please don't try to educate me on this. Unless you have built brands in an already crowded industry, there is absolutely nothing you can tell me about brands. I have had this experience -- the establishment of name brands in an industry which was already crowded. There's nothing related to this about which you can enlighten me.
    17 Mar 2013, 10:32 AM Reply Like
  • But I don't need to enlighten you, I just need to point out that DDD is not at that point, that the entire 3D printing industry is not at that point, and thus all these players are acting in an industry without barriers to entry and are as likely to suceed as Tucker was, building his innovative automobiles.
    17 Mar 2013, 10:45 AM Reply Like
  • sounds like retirement is in his near future
    14 Mar 2013, 03:07 PM Reply Like
  • Did he make a filing revealing why he is selling his shares?
    14 Mar 2013, 03:16 PM Reply Like
  • The entire management has been really quiet lately while these shares have been sliding. I'm a little worried as I am a shareholder.
    14 Mar 2013, 06:00 PM Reply Like
  • Samurai,


    DDD is strictly a buy-and-hold. With all due respect, if you'd wanted a sure thing, you should have bought Coke or Exxon Mobile on one of the dips.


    There will be many, many ups and downs for all of the companies in the 3-D manufacturing arena before the ultimate success or failure of any of them is revealed by future events.
    14 Mar 2013, 08:39 PM Reply Like
  • January you've got it pegged. You people are getting too ancy about all the short term volatility of 3D systems. The steel industry didn't spring up over night. Neither will 3D manufacturing, but it WILL transform manufacturing as we know it some day in the not-so distant future. If you don't plan to buy and hold this company for a decade, just get out now. There are much more promising short-term trade opportunities on the market today. This one doesn't fit that category. I am Long DDD and will be for many years...
    15 Mar 2013, 01:49 AM Reply Like
  • You are exactly right, User 730.


    3-D manufacturing WILL transform almost every industry we can think of . . . and perhaps some that we can't even imagine yet. And it won't be that far off.


    But in the meantime (just as one would imagine with brand new technology), there are going to be a lot of questions, a lot of uncertainties and -- if someone isn't in it for the long haul -- a lot of anxiety. I have small amounts of DDD, SSYS and DASTY. And I'm holding them. I don't care what their share prices are from day to day. The ups and downs in the meantime are irrelevant, and I knew that going in.
    15 Mar 2013, 10:13 AM Reply Like
  • He's 73 and most likely just cashing out. 3D is a major revolution but $DDD is only one player. The public companies are feeling intense pressure from Makerbot who just went into partnership with Autodesk $ADSK , the 800 pound gorilla in design software.
    14 Mar 2013, 03:17 PM Reply Like
  • He's still keeping shares...a good sign.
    14 Mar 2013, 04:30 PM Reply Like
  • There has been automatic sell by Mr. Hull since April last year. Precisely 6000 share on the 10th of each month. And as a result of the stock split, he involuntarily acquired another 320K shares, and he is pushing it out in bulk. Apparently he is exiting the company. I have not seen any other execs taking profit after the split. So this should be benign personal matter.
    14 Mar 2013, 09:10 PM Reply Like
  • From the number of people defending the stock in spite of the doubts surrounding it (lack of barriers, overvaluation), I'd say the stock continues down.
    14 Mar 2013, 09:39 PM Reply Like
  • Paulos,


    You're just too old to be playing around with the technology of the future. You're trying to apply analysis that would be appropriate for Proctor and Gamble to a very disruptive technology. It just doesn't fit. You don't like the risks? Then, buy Exxon Mobile. Some people want to be part of a coming technology.
    15 Mar 2013, 10:17 AM Reply Like
  • Sadly this is a grave concern. If he had faith in his company he would hold and pass what he believed was a growing stake on to his successors. Cashing out 50% + now shows a serious lack of commitment,
    15 Mar 2013, 04:37 AM Reply Like
  • You DID realize, didn't you, Ted, that the guy is SEVENTY-THREE? Did you want him to work until he dies at his desk? In order to demonstrate his "serious commitment?"


    Good grief.
    15 Mar 2013, 10:18 AM Reply Like
  • At 33 times EV/EBITDA on a business with no barriers to entry, I'd expect him to continue to work from his grave.


    (no position here)
    15 Mar 2013, 10:19 AM Reply Like
  • Well, Paulo, let's look at what you consider to be the "no barriers to entry" problem with 3-D manufacturing.


    If I wanted to market a dark-colored, bubbly sweet beverage, what would my barriers to entry be? Oh, right. There are already people who are leaders in that market, so it would be tough to get people to buy my dark-colored, bubbly sweet beverage, right?


    But it wouldn't be because it's difficult to formulate and produce a dark-colored, bubbly sweet beverage, right? It would be solely because others got there first.


    This analysis applies to pretty much every other product or service you can think of. Why did Warren Buffet and his partner pay such a huge, whopping amount for the Heinz company? Is it because it's hard to make ketchup? No. It's because Heinz has the name.


    In the same way, there are a few 3-D manufacturing companies who have earned themselves a name as leaders -- if for no other reason than that they started in the industry first.


    I think your "no barriers to entry" observation fails for the reasons I've stated above.
    16 Mar 2013, 10:38 AM Reply Like
  • January, that's called a "brand". I don't think that brands in this space are powerful enough to provide for the same effect. One day it can be 3D Systems, the other it can be makerbot - the market is entirely driven by specs and price.


    Think of it this way - if the beverage was being selected on specs and price, Coca-cola would have no advantage.
    16 Mar 2013, 10:44 AM Reply Like
  • Thank you, Paulo, but I don't need you to tell me how to think of it.


    I am very well aware that if a beverage were being selected on specs and price, Coca Cola would have no advantage.


    But what was Coca Cola before it built its brand name? Just a fizzy, sweet, brown beverage that any chemist could have duplicated.


    You know what, old timer? You've already said that you don't have a dog in this fight -- that is, you don't own any shares of any 3-D manufacturing company. So why don't you stop talking down the industry for those us us who believe it has a future and who've picked a few horses.


    Aren't there REALLY some better things for you to do since you admittedly have no skin in the game?


    (You don't actually need to define "brand" for me. I helped build a start-up company from scratch that established its own brands in an industry that was already very crowded, and I know what it takes. Have you had that experience?)
    17 Mar 2013, 10:29 AM Reply Like
  • You shouldn't look at what Coca-Cola was before it built the brand name. You should look at any one of hundreds of other competitors that weren't Coca-Cola before it built its name.


    Survivorship bias, it is called.
    17 Mar 2013, 10:47 AM Reply Like
  • I still own 70% of the original shares. I've witnessed the increase of $3 to $4 /day in the past 3 months! I am not thinking of selling my remaining portfolio in the near future could wait!
    15 Mar 2013, 05:45 AM Reply Like
  • certainly is a gut wrencher. I'm in for the long haul .
    15 Mar 2013, 01:18 PM Reply Like
  • Did it occur to anyone, that perhaps Mr. Hill is ailing, and wants to enjoy the rest of his "golden twight years" ? Why sell, as we all know that 3D is still pretty much in its' infantile stage, as far as the awareness of what the average man knows about it. A good number of foreign countries, undoubtedly, are still "digesting" its' creativity and potential. Also, the economy here, is working on getting a little stronger. And hopefully soon, the process will become a little more affordable. Once these are reached, the stock should begin a strong upward climb.
    16 Mar 2013, 12:41 PM Reply Like
  • Look folks......3d printing or additive manufacturing IS NOT NEW TECHNOLOGY. It's been with us since the mid 1980s. It's a wonderful process for making prototypes of things you may want to make by conventional means. That is all that it is. The small cheaper machines are appropriate for the hobbyist to make flee market junk.
    16 Mar 2013, 02:03 PM Reply Like
  • And of course we know there's NO MARKET for flea market junk. No little girls interested in plastic jewelry and dolls and ponies. No little boys interested in soldiers and blocks and space guys. Have you visited any toy aisles lately?


    I think that your analysis that 3-D manufacturing is limited to plastic junk demonstrates a real paucity of imagination. But even if you were correct about that, you have just outed yourself as someone who has no ideas about what is selling to kids and hobbyists.
    17 Mar 2013, 10:37 AM Reply Like
  • At 73 yrs. he doesn't have much of a future. Spend it while you can.
    16 Mar 2013, 02:09 PM Reply Like
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