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HP Inc results boosted by PC sales as it waits for 3D manufacturing to take off

3D manufacturing is HP Inc’s next big growth area, but that is 10 years away. In the meantime, it needs to rely on PC and printer sales

HP Inc has reported 13% growth in business for the second quarter of 2018, compared with the equivalent period in 2017, boosted by commercial PC sales.

Its second-quarter 2018 SEC filing showed that commercial PC net revenue increased by 16%, while consumer net revenue rose by 10%. Shipments of both notebooks and desktop PCs increased by 7%.

The company’s printing business also reported growth, of 11%, boosted by an 88% increase in commercial printers shipped.

HP Inc continues to make a big play in the 3D printing market, said its CEO, Dion Weisler, during the earnings call.

In a transcript of the earnings call posted on the Seeking Alpha financial blogging site, Weisler said: “The 3D printing business is a huge opportunity for us and one where we aim to disrupt the $12tn global manufacturing market. The growth trajectory and momentum behind this business continues.

“We are seeing an increase in customers placing repeat orders, upgrading their systems for higher-volume manufacturing and scaling with double-digit unit installations.”

Asked about the progress HP Inc was making in 3D printing, Weisler admitted that the evolution of the technology into mainstream manufacturing is “a long path”, and could take five to 10 years. “We are expanding our adoption across key verticals,” he said.

Read more about 3D printing

  • In a Q&A, John Dulchinos of Jabil, the world’s third-largest contract manufacturer, explains why it is increasingly using 3D printing and additive manufacturing technologies.
  • Take a look at three printers from Nano Dimension, XJet, and HP demonstrated at the Rapid + TCT additive manufacturing conference that are prime examples of advances in 3D printing.

Weisler said half of the 3D application areas where prospective customers engage with HP Inc involve manufacturing in production. “When a customer is contemplating buying 3D printing, they will give us a file and they say can you make this path and in 50% of the cases, these are production applications, which is really what differentiates us with this technology,” he said.

Weisler said Jabil, a major contract manufacturer, is currently deploying Multi Jet Fusion in the US and Asia as part of its distributor manufacturing strategy. “This quarter, we also continue to grow unit placement across all verticals and geographies, including new customers in the automotive and electronics industry,” he added.

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