Proto Labs Acquires Rapid Manufacturing

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The acquisition of the custom parts supplier expands Proto Labs’ machining capabilities with quick-turn and e-commerce sheet metal services.


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Proto Labs (Maple Plain, Minnesota) has acquired Rapid Manufacturing Group, a privately-held, New Hampshire-based custom parts supplier. With the acquisition, Proto Labs expands its quick-turn manufacturing services and CNC machining capabilities.

Rapid will operate under the name “Rapid, a Proto Labs Company,” and will transition over time to operating solely under the Proto Labs brand.

Rapid was founded in 2001 on the idea of using automation to provide custom sheet metal parts faster than with traditional methods. The company grew its manufacturing capabilities and scale, adding CNC machining. It operates in 140,000 square feet of manufacturing space and currently employs approximately 300 people.

The acquisition will expand Proto Labs’ team to more than 2,000 employees worldwide.

This expansion of Proto Labs’ services and capabilities is intended to help optimize product development and improve supply chain efficiencies. “Rapid not only adds quick-turn and e-commerce-enabled sheet metal services to our portfolio, it also expands our machining capabilities to support larger and more complex projects,” CEO Vicki Holt says.

Under the terms of the agreement, Proto Labs will acquire Rapid for $110 million in cash and $10 million in Proto Labs stock. Rapid’s 2017 annual revenue is forecasted to be approximately $45 million.