3D Systems/Stratasys partner and rival Materialise files for IPO

|About: 3D Systems Corp. (DDD)|By:, SA News Editor

Materialise (MTLS), a Belgian provider of 3D printing software and manufacturing services, has filed for a $125M IPO. No symbol has been given yet. The underwriters: Piper, Credit Suisse, BB&T Capital, Janney, Stephens, and KBC Securities.

Materialise's software handles data preparation/process planning for 3D printing projects, thereby interacting with both CAD software from the likes of Autodesk, and 3D printers from the likes of 3D Systems, ExOne, and Stratasys. Ford, Boeing, Airbus, and Toyota are among its 8K+ licensees.

The company uses 98 3D printers to provide rapid prototyping/additive manufacturing services. It also makes custom parts for automakers, and provides 3D medical imaging software and related clinical services.

The company has a complicated relationship with 3D Systems (DDD -2%) and Stratasys (SSYS +2.5%): Both 3D and Stratasys are among Materialise's software licensees, but they also compete with its services arm - Stratasys just bought two services firms - and are moving aggressively to expand their own software lineups. There has been speculation 3D might try to buy Materialise.

Materialise had 2013 revenue of $94.7M (+16% Y/Y), net income of $4.7M, and a gross margin of 60.5%.