Autodesk puts up $100M fund for 3D printing companies

Gigaom

Autodesk is gearing up to release its open-source 3D printer and accompanying software, both of which it hopes will spur growth in the 3D printer industry. But today it announced another effort to encourage the growing industry: $100 million it will award to the most promising 3D printer companies.

“We will look carefully at companies small or large that are able to both innovate and enhance the ecosystem,” Autodesk consumer group vice president Samir Hanna said in an interview. “We want to make sure we bring the best minds together … that will develop in the fastest possible way the 3D printing ecosystem, hopefully at a much faster pace than has happened to date.”

The fund is aimed at both software and hardware companies. Hanna described the selection process as “deliberately open,” so anyone is encouraged to apply.

Autodesk surprised the industry back in May with the announcement of the 3D printer–its…

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