MakerBot and Stratasys Make it Official and Ink $403M Merger Deal

After more than a week of merger rumors, desktop 3-D printer developer MakerBot Industries in Brooklyn today announced it agreed to be acquired by Stratasys (Nasdaq: SSYS) in Minneapolis, MN, in a stock-for-stock deal valued at $403 million.

The news is the latest major deal for a New York-based startup after Yahoo acquired Tumblr one month ago for $1.1 billion and another example of consolidation in the 3-D printing industry.

Stratasys will fork over 4.76 million shares, valued at $84.60 per as of market closing today, in exchange for all of privately-held MakerBot. Stakeholders in MakerBot could receive an additional 2.38 million shares, valued at $201 million, through the end of 2014 via performance-based, earn-out payments. Stratasys, which makes 3-D printers for production and prototypes, merged last year with Objet of Rehovot, Israel.

Bre Pettis, co-founder and CEO of four-year-old MakerBot, is staying onboard to run the company, which will operate as a subsidiary of Stratasys. The deal is expected to be complete in the third quarter.

MakerBot’s desktop 3-D printers and Web-based design hub are part of Pettis’s desire to “democratize manufacturing.” Hobbyists, architects, and other creators can use MakerBot’s printers to create objects from their own designs or those shared online by others. According to today’s announcement, MakerBot generated in $11.5 million in revenue in the first quarter of 2013 compared with $15.7 million in full-year revenue for 2012.

Early this month MakerBot cut the ribbon on its new 55,000 sq. ft. production facility in Brooklyn. About that same time, rumors surfaced of possible merger talks between Stratasys and MakerBot.

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