Welsh Enterprise Awards 2017

4 SME NEWS / Welsh Enterprise Awards 2017 , AT 3D-SQUARED provides a strategic consulting and support service for organisations involved with 3D printing and additive manufacturing technologies. We spoke to Andrew Allshorn to find out more about the respected work and quality services the firmprovides. 3D Printing Consultancy of the Year 2017 & Best Additive Manufacturing Director 2017 Established in 2007, AT 3D-SQUARED offers strategic consulting services and advice for organisations that have adopted or want to adopt 3D printing and additive manufacturing technologies. Andrew provides a fascinating introduction to the company’s award-winning work. “AT 3D-SQUARED was founded with the idea of offering real knowledge and insight into 3D printing and additive manufacturing. These technologies are truly amazing and offer companies many opportunities that are original and unique. The key to unlocking the technology’s potential comes from understanding its limitations as well as their original capabilities. Together, the workforce here at the company, offer a unique breadth and extensive knowledge of the software, hardware and materials aspects that must be combined to generate best practice and results with additive manufacturing technologies.” “A variety of organisations jump into this technology and end up purchasing the wrong machine for their requirements, simply because they do not understand the capabilities of the different 3D printing systems and just follow the hype. We are able to analyse companies’ R&D and manufacturing processes and help them choose the correct process for their specific applications, implement them and keep the machines running at optimum levels. Educating our customers and the public about how to utilise this technology is a core part of what we do.” Indeed, the company has scooped many awards in recent times, across the UK but particularly in Wales. Covering a lot of bases in a variety of industrial sectors, Andrew’s experience has seen him invited to partake in a variety of global events and summits. Earlier this year, Andrew was appointed as a European Ambassador for AMUG, in recognition of his non-stop work in raising global awareness of AM in various roles across more than three decades. Andrew explains the company’s overall mission and how it integrates innovation into every aspect of the work, as well as what sets the company apart. “Fundamentally, I think one of the things that really drives us is that we are not tied to a specific machine manufacturer, and therefore we can offer an impartial opinion regarding the best 3D printer for any application. This is the key to everything, and by ensuring that companies invest in the right technology for them is very important to us.” Andrew explains how the company stays ahead of any emerging developments. He also provides a flavour of the company’s internal culture. Staying aware that the industry is ever changing, Andrew is creative and innovative, working hard to think outside the box, always working hard to find a solution to something that apparently cannot be done. “As an artist and product designer, I am always aware that things must change to keep up with the fast pace of today’s technologies. Sometimes there is no straight forward answer and finding a solution can take many years, but it is very rewarding when you find the right result.” “Training both staff and customers is very important to me, so as a company we are very open about these technologies and prefer to work closely with those we serve to build up a lasting partnership. Loyalty is also an important part of the business, so that both parties can grow and develop together.” To wrap things up, Andrew reveals the prospects for the company and the wider developments he foresees across the corporate landscape. The long-term outlook for AT 3D-SQUARED is positive., and Andrew is of the belief that the right education and understanding of technology will create an exciting future for everyone. “The 3D printing industry is fast moving, so we must change continually. Working together with companies such as Michelin, we can take legacy (old) 3D printing technology, regenerate it and create something that can outperform new machines on the market. We can do this due to our three decades of experience combined with consistently listening to the end users we work with, to give them what they ask for. “This industry has a wonderful future, but we need to take care to educate people correctly, so that it has a sustainable future and doesn’t implode by over expectation. These machines can build virtually anything; indeed, the sky is the limit, but learn to use them correctly and not just because you can. “Finally, I believe that education and understanding 3D printing technologies from an early age is where our industry needs to be at. That’s why I chose to donate a printer to my old high school, which turned out to be one of the most rewarding things I have ever done.” WEL17002

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