Prusa Research, a 3D printer manufacturer and fastest growing tech company in Central Europe, is celebrating a milestone by releasing a behind-the-scenes video for its fans and offering free shipping for one week.
Prusa fans are in for a treat. To celebrate selling over 100,000 3D printers, the famed founder Josef Prusa released a video on the story of his company so far and is giving free shipping for all orders for one week.
The Road to 100,000 Original Prusa Printers is a just-released video created by Prusa3D for its fervent fanbase. It runs through the company’s history, from its humble beginnings to present day popularity.
The video begins by showing what Prusa3D looks like now — a sprawling nine-floor factory, 410 employees, two huge warehouses, six filament lines (soon to be 13), and about 130,000 original Prusa printers sold worldwide.
The video then skips back to 2010, when Josef Prusa was studying at the University of Economics. He explains that he had a lot of free time so he and his brother got “really into” DJing. Surprisingly, the reason Prusa got into 3D printing was that he wanted to build better music controllers.
He stumbled upon RepRap and first built a Mendel 3D printer in 2010 which he hugely amended. His work became popular on GitHub and Prusa Research was founded in 2012 by Josef and his brother Michal.
“It looks crazy from today’s point of view but at the time it was just two of us in the basement hacking together some Prusa Mendels,” recalls Prusa in a voiceover.
“Founding a company, I wanted a permanent reminder of my roots in RepRap so I got my open-hardware tattoo. The design is the direct output of how slicer would slice it.”
In 2013, Prusa Research was selling five printers per week. However, the company’s first big release was in 2015, the Original Prusa i3 Kit. Shipping quickly grew to 100 printers every month. The launch of prusaprinters.org, a community hub and spot to download models, also helped build upon Prusa’s fanbase.
The company continued to expand rapidly but Prusa explains that the biggest storm was in May 2016 when they released the Original Prusa i3 MK2. This printer was very popular and, although customers faced a two month waiting time, demand didn’t fall.
With such rapid growth, the company moved into a new building and in September 2017 released the Original Prusa i3 MK3. It took months to bring the lead time for this printer down from several months to just a few days.
A project close to Prusa’s heart was to build a makerspace in the huge building that the company now occupies. This opened in June 2018 and is a place for makers to get all the equipment they need to tinker in one place. There are also 3D printing classes every Friday.
Prusa mentions the SLA printer which the team started work on in March 2018 with the founder of Future3D. The team has been polishing up their printer for the past year and the SL1 is the result of this work.
Finally, Prusa talks about community and how important it is to the entire company. This is why the team recently launched a new platform for the community. It features a map showing where you can ask others for help or even invite them for a beer.
“I would have never imagined that this is where we would be in just a few short years when I started. We went literally from hacking together printers in a basement to this level,” says Prusa.
“Thank you, everyone who supported us on our journey, we would not be here without you. We will continue our mission of pushing 3D printing technology further for everyday people and, as always, happy printing.”
License: The text of "Prusa Offering Free Shipping to Celebrate Selling 100K 3D Printers" by All3DP is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
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