The Czech 3D printer maker Prusa Research is the fastest-growing company in Central Europe, Kiwi.com is the second. Czech companies scored high and dominated this year´s ranking. Find out more about the fastest-growing company in Central Europe - winner Prusa Research.
In the west, their printers are mostly bought by individuals, in the east by companies, but this is naturally just a generalisation, DIY enthusiasts and designers are the same in every country. This year, Prusa Lab was opened in Prague – a shared space where you can go every Wednesday and print something. Try it, the significance of 3D printing increases every year.
You are the fastest growing company in the Central Europe region, you succeeded in the Top 10 of Fast 500 EMEA competition last year. What other news do you have?
We are catching up on a lot of backlog in terms of building the organisational structure, we are “depunking” certain parts of the company a bit, so we are introducing new processes, which takes a great deal of time but it is now necessary for further growth. If I were establishing the company again now, I would start to employ the people around me much sooner than I had done. I had to do a lot of things alone in the beginning, which is of course no longer possible now due to our growth and size.
In the meantime, we have built a factory for the production of filaments – the plastic feedstock for printers, we are launching their production for our printers directly at our premises in Holešovice, Prague. And we present a new 3D printing technology in New York.
Your printers print components for other printers and you are self-sufficient in the area of filaments too. Is there anything at all that you cannot print yourselves?
We would need an eighth day in the week, and maybe even ninth and tenth… But seriously – we manufacture components for more printers, filaments and software. Prusa Lab is not just an open workshop but also a prototype workshop. So we are really able to manufacture almost everything ourselves.
You invite the public to the PrusaLab, they can also visit the farm, which is a room where you print components. Is this openness to the world what is behind your success?
There are naturally things that we don’t show, but the openness is certainly a significant part of our activity. When you learn to be open, you don’t needlessly waste time during the development by trying to protect your secrets. It saves a lot of energy. We would of course like to use patents, but that would slow down the development a lot, and by extension further growth.
When you say 3D printing, Prusa Research comes to mind automatically now, you are simply pioneers. What other plans do you have for educating the public?
The biggest limit of 3D printing is the fact that it still remains a difficult process for many people, our goal is therefore to make the technology more accessible to people so that even your grandmother would be able to print something. We also want to support technical education because that is the only right type of education nowadays. But young children don’t have many opportunities to try out 3D printing. So our goal is to encourage them not to be afraid to pursue technical education and to be better friends with technology.
HOW DELOITTE SEES IT
Prusa Research through the eyes of Kateřina Novotná, Senior Tax Manager Deloitte
Many good ideas and companies spring up in this country, but what do you think makes this particular company unique? Why does it do well?
Prusa Research is an exceptional company in many respects – they were able to sense a need on the market, develop and manufacture a unique product at a first-rate technological level, make it available to thousands of customers worldwide and become the world’s number one in their field. It is no exaggeration to say that the story of this company is the “Czech dream” come true. They have made an incredible journey in the last year – relocation from Karlín to new, larger premises in Holešovice, a new printer model, they started manufacturing their own printer feedstock, they opened PrusaLab.
What lies ahead for the company, how can it move forward?
I think that Messrs Průša have a great future ahead of them. It is very hard to maintain a bar set as high as 6,900% growth per year that they achieved last year and thus ranked third in the main category of the Fast 50 competition, but I believe that they will enjoy a “thousand percent” growth for a few more years. I appreciate that they start socially beneficial projects too. One of the examples is PrusaLab – a DIY and education workshop where anyone can come and try out the latest technology for themselves.