In a recent development, Protolabs, a global technology-enabled digital manufacturing leader, has signed an agreement to acquire 3D Hubs for $ 280M (nearly €272.14M) in closing consideration and $ 50M (approx €41.2M) subject to performance-based targets.
Protolabs is a technology-enabled company that claims to produce custom components in as fast as one day with automated 3D printing, CNC machining, sheet metal fabrication, and injection moulding processes.
“The transaction creates the world’s most comprehensive digital manufacturing offer for custom parts, providing Protolabs with a network of manufacturing partners to fulfil a breadth of capabilities outside of its current envelope, as well as a broader offering of pricing and lead time options,” Protolabs mentions in a press release.
About 3D Hubs
Amsterdam-based 3D Hubs is an online manufacturing platform that provides engineers with on-demand access to a global network of manufacturing partners. Users can easily upload their design, instantly receive a quote, and start production at the click of a button. Endeit Capital has been a shareholder of the company since early 2019.
“The entire 3D Hubs team is thrilled to join Protolabs and continue to revolutionise the manufacturing industry through innovation. At 3D Hubs, our goal is to empower companies to create revolutionary products through supply chain efficiency and reliability. We are confident that partnering with Protolabs will help us advance that mission,” says Bram de Zwart, co-founder and CEO at 3D Hubs.
Back in 2019, the company raised $ 18M Series C (nearly €14.9M) round led by Endeit Capital. Hearst Ventures, EQT Ventures, Balderton Capital, Arthur Kosten (founder of Booking.com) and Erik de Bruijn (founder of Ultimaker) also participated in this round.
According to Endeit Capital, since then, “the company expanded the platform’s global network, opened offices in Berlin, Paris as well as Chicago and became a top 3 global player in its market segment. 3D Hubs now works with 240 premium manufacturing partners based across four continents, employs over 135 people and has served 35.000 businesses worldwide such as Amazon Robotics, Audi, HP, NASA, and Merck.”
Endeit Capital is a growth capital investment firm with offices in Amsterdam and Hamburg. It claims to provide growth capital typically between €3m – €10m to European internet companies with international growth potential. Its areas of focus include digital media & marketing, online commerce & services, edtech & mobile.
“This exit follows the successful 2020 exit of Endeit Capital’s German portfolio company Gastrofix to the Canadian listed company Lightspeed,” mentions the Amsterdam-based investment firm.
Umbrella, the membership platform that connects the elderly to pre-screened and vetted professionals for household services, has been acquired by ANGI Homeservices. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
Nine United, a privately held family of companies has acquired Peak Capital’s portfolio company Flinders, a premium furniture retailer in the Netherlands and Belgium. This acquisition marks the first exit for the Amsterdam-based VC firm Peak Capital in 2021.
The Dutch company sold 100 per cent of the Flinders shares from management and external investors RTL Ventures and Peak Capital.
Notably, the VC firm is known for its strong track record with over 20 investments including IENS (exit to Tripadvisor in 2015), Radionomy (exit to Vivendi in 2016), CheapCargo (exit to PostNL in 2017), and Catawiki.
Through this transaction, Flinders became part of Nine United Ecommerce, a company of Nine United A/S from Denmark. As per the company’s claims, the takeover was made based on positive advice from the works council.
According to Business.gov.nl, the works council is made up of employees, who get involved with decisions about the running of the company. It promotes and protects the interests of the employees in the company. As per the Dutch Works Councils Act, “Any entrepreneur carrying on an enterprise in which normally at least 50 persons are working shall, in the interests of the proper functioning of the enterprise with respect to all its objectives, establish a Works Council in order to ensure the proper consultation and representation of the persons working in the enterprise, and in order to be able to comply with any requirements of or pursuant to this Act that relate to the said Works Council.”
Oscar Diele appointed as CEO
The founder of Flinders, Geert-Jan Smits resigned his position to start an innovative and sustainable initiative within the furniture industry. Notably, COO Oscar Diele succeeds Geert-Jan Smits as CEO of Flinders.
“We believe Flinders is an excellent fit for the Nine United group,” saysOscar Diele. “We share the same values and beliefs that you can only achieve great results with people who are passionate about. Now that we are part of Nine United, we can continue our success in the Benelux.”
Nine United family
With 120 employees, the company also confirmed that it continues to operate as a local company and brand within the Nine United family. The Zaandam-based company has more than 36,000 furniture, design lamps, and home accessories in its range.
On the other side, Nine United Ecommerce is the e-commerce arm of Nine United A/S. It currently comprises three leading online furniture stores within the home & living segment: AmbienteDirect, Connox (both located in Germany), and Flinders.
Invested in Open Social and Stack
Amsterdam-based Peak Capital is a venture capital firm which provides smart capital and pro-active hands-on support to fast-growing highly-scalable marketplaces, SaaS or data startups. Established in 2007, Peak Capital manages 4 funds, with the first 3 funds being fully invested. Its co-founders are Heleen Dura – van Oord, Johan van Mil, Stefan Bary, and Hein Siemerink.
Peak Capital’s previous investments include successful exits such as IENS (acquired by Tripadvisor, NASDAQ: TRIP), Radionomy (acquired by Vivendi, EURONEXT: VIV), Cheapcargo (acquired by PostNL, AMS: PNL) and OneFit, which recently merged with German Urban Sports Club to become the largest sports and fitness platform in Europe.
Back in December 2020, the Dutch VC firm invested in Open Social, a community-building platform and marketplace, and Stack, a startup that aims to build the first tab-less browser or as they call it Operating System for the Internet.
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White Ops, the digital fraud prevention platform, has been acquired by Goldman Sachs Merchant Division, ClearSky Security, and NightDragon. The terms of the transaction were not disclosed.