The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: General Motors, Tesla, 3D Systems, Materialise and Proto Labs

For immediate publication
Chicago, IL - October 9, 2020 - announces the list of stocks on the Analyst Blog. Every day, analysts at Zacks Equity Research discuss the latest news and events that affect stocks and the financial markets. Stocks recently featured on the blog include: GM from General Motors Company, TSLA from Tesla, Inc., DDD from 3D Systems Corporation, MTLS from Materialize NV, and PRLB from Proto Labs, Inc.
Here are the highlights from Thursday's analyst blog:
3D printing is revolutionizing the auto industry: 3 picks
Significant advances in additive manufacturing (AM) technology - popularly known as 3D printing - have changed the way products are designed and manufactured. Over the past decade, 3D printing has seen a phenomenal surge in popularity and adoption, especially in capital-intensive industries.
AM technology is increasingly being researched in the automotive industry. In the auto industry, 3D printers have traditionally been used for a very long time to make automobile prototypes. However, the range of 3D printing applications in the automotive industry has expanded in recent years, fundamentally changing the automotive market. The use of 3D printing technology in the auto industry has resulted in newer designs, lighter products, shorter lead times and lower costs.
Automotive 3D printing of a game changer
3D printing technology is becoming increasingly important in the auto industry thanks to the increasing demand for more powerful vehicles and the need to optimize the production process and optimize logistics. Automakers are rapidly accelerating the adoption of AM technology in the face of changing industry dynamics in order to stay innovative.
While the industry has been using AM mainly for rapid prototyping for decades, the technical development of AM is a strong argument for its use in end parts, product innovations and direct manufacturing. Auto majors like General Motors and Tesla have begun to see the commercial benefits of 3D printers in automotive engineering.
3D printing offers automakers an economical solution and offers consumers a range of options. AM technology helps manufacture components with fewer design constraints and offers flexibility in designing products with custom functions. It helps remove the complexity of the supply chain by manufacturing the final parts directly and eliminating the need for new tools, reducing overall lead time and improving market responsiveness.
Increasing electrification efforts by automakers should lead to widespread adoption of AM technology in the auto industry. The electric vehicle industry is successfully using 3D printing to accelerate vehicle development. Generative design and AM technology are also leading to lighter parts for environmentally friendly vehicles. As we know, light electric vehicles are vital as they result in lower energy consumption and superior range. Several EV projects are currently using AM technology in production and development.
In this era of connected vehicles, the number of electronic devices such as sensors and antennas in vehicles is increasing. 3D printing for electronics leads to efficient methods for creating intelligent components for network vehicles, for collecting vehicle data and for cost efficiency.
With electric and driverless cars the future of mobility, automakers are facing revolutionary changes that will drive AM technology in the industry. As 3D printing helps automakers gain flexibility in production, cut costs, and achieve better auto components, automotive companies are increasingly launching collaborative projects and signing partnerships with 3D printing companies to industrialize AM technology. Future uses of 3D printing in the auto industry depend on how much the technology evolves in the coming years.
Given that automakers are using AM technology to gain leverage in a highly competitive marketplace, investors should watch out for the 3D printing space, which is expected to see massive growth in the years to come. Most 3D printing inventories in particular rebounded yesterday after Tesla posted a job posting for its "fast growing additive manufacturing operations". Prominent 3D printing companies like 3D Systems, ExOne Company, Stratasys, Materialize NV, and Proto Labs were up 18.4%, 13.4%, 5.6%, 5.2% and 5.1%, respectively.
Below we've highlighted three stocks in the 3D printing space that you should keep in your portfolio for long-term growth. All three stocks have a Zacks rank 3 (hold). The full list of today's Zacks # 1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks can be found here.
3 stocks to watch out for
Proto Labs, Inc .: Proto Labs, based in Minnesota, is a technology-enabled manufacturing service provider. The company uses traditional manufacturing techniques and 3D printing to develop plastic and metal prototypes. Its technology-based approach offers the fastest processing speed in the industry. Such fast services give him a competitive advantage and help customers to produce quickly and introduce them to the markets more quickly. The Zacks consensus estimate for the result for the financial year 2021 shows a growth of more than 8% compared to the previous year.
Materialize NV: The Belgian company Materialize offers 3D printing software and on-demand 3D printing services. Wilfried Vancraen, who holds numerous patents related to technical and medical applications of 3D printing, is the owner and founder of the company. This is encouraging as various studies show that stocks tend to do well, especially when the company is owned by the owner. The Zacks consensus estimate for the result for the financial year 2021 assumes a growth of more than 188% compared to the previous year.
3D Systems Corp .: Headquartered in South Carolina, the company is focused on strategic initiatives like enhancing existing 3D printers, strengthening partnerships, and increasing productivity to drive growth. 3D Systems made acquisitions to diversify its offering, add synergistic technologies and expand its expertise in operational markets. The Zacks consensus estimate for FY 2021 earnings implies a year-over-year growth of 154.8%. A long-term expected EPS growth of 26% is expected.
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Zacks Investment Research
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Past performance is no guarantee of future results. The potential for loss is associated with every investment. This material is provided for informational purposes only and nothing in this document constitutes investment, legal, accounting, or tax advice, or a recommendation to buy, sell or hold any security. No recommendation or advice is made as to whether or not to invest in any suitable for certain investors. There is no assurance that any investment in any security, company, sector, or market that has been identified and described has been or will be profitable. All information is current as of the date of this publication and is subject to change without notice. All views or opinions expressed may not reflect those of the entire company. Zacks Investment Research does not engage in investment banking, market making, or asset management activities in any securities. These returns come from hypothetical portfolios made up of stocks with Zacks Rank = 1 that have been rebalanced monthly with no transaction costs. These are not the returns on actual stock portfolios. The S&P 500 is an unmanaged index. Visit for information on the performance metrics shown in this press release.

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