Desktop Metal, a 3-D printing unicorn, has raised another $160 million, bringing its total funding to a whopping $438 million and its valuation to some $1.5 billion.
Koch Disruptive Technologies, a subsidiary of Koch Industries—the privately held industrial conglomerate with $110 billion in revenues—led the investment, which was joined by GV, Panasonic and Techtronic. Koch joins a high-powered lineup of investors in Burlington, Massachusetts-based Desktop Metal that includes Ford, GE Ventures, New Enterprise Associates and Kleiner Perkins.
Desktop Metal has been working to upend the $12.8 trillion global manufacturing industry with 3-D metal printers that can operate at mass-production scale. Production scale has been the holy grail of 3-D printing, which has to date largely been used for prototyping and for high-end, regulated industries such as aerospace and medical devices. Mass-production capabilities would be especially beneficial to industries like automotive because of 3-D printing’s ability to reduce the weight and increase the efficiency of parts with designs that could not be created by traditional methods.