Cathie Wood’s decision to leave active management de ARK Investment’s 3D Printing ETF (BATS:PRNT) is raising concern about the whole sector. 3D printing stocks on the whole have done very poorly this year.
PRNT has lost 39% of its value in 2022, nearly double the loss of the S&P 500. It is focused on “additive manufacturing,” the creation of parts from printer-like machines that drip or cut precisely based on computer designs.
The market response is not only to sell PRNT, down 2.5% on Sept. 22 but to sell the leading players as well. Sistemas 3D (NYSE:DDD), the longtime industry leader, is down 7%. Velo3D (NYSE:VLD) is down 6%. Stratasys (NASDAQ:SSYS) is down 4%. Desktop Metal (NYSE:DM) is down nearly 13%. Only 3D Systems is currently worth as much as $1 billion, and just barely.
Failure to Mass Produce
3D printing had a brief vogue a decade ago as Bre Pettis’ Brooklyn-based MakerBot, now owned by Stratasys, made consumer-priced 3D printers based on melting plastic and supported “maker faire” conventions for students and engineers.