There's a new way to bet on the future of 3D printing

3d printing gorillaMirko Tobias Schaefer3D Printing gorilla

Imagine walking into a 3D printing store and walking out with a piece of bespoke jewellery, fully customised earphones that only fit your ears, or a life size replica of yourself.

The applications for 3D printing are endless, not only in manufacturing but also in medicine, food, fashion, and vehicles among others industries.

Now, there is an exchange-traded fund tracking the revolutionary industry.

BATS ETF Marketplace listed the first, and only, ETF in the US to focus solely on the 3D printing ecosystem.

The ETF (Bats: PRNT) is an ARK investment management product. PRNT tracks the Total 3D-Printing Index, which includes the leading companies in 3D printing and related businesses such as computer-aided design and simulation software, service centres, scanning and measurement, and materials.

“ARK expects 3D printing to revolutionise manufacturing by collapsing the time between design and production, reducing costs, and providing greater design complexity, accuracy and customisation,” Catherine D. Wood, ARK’s Founder, CEO and CIO, said in a statement.

The process of 3-D printing uses computer-created digital models to create real-world objects — everything from simple chess pieces to more complex objects such as functioning clocks . The printers follow the shape of the model by stacking layer upon layer of material to make the objects. You can read a more detailed explanation here.

The economic implications of 3-D printing are significant: McKinsey Global Institute research suggests that it could have an impact of up to $550 billion a year by 2025.

An ETF, or exchange traded fund, is a marketable security that tracks an index, a commodity, bonds, or a basket of assets like an index fund. Unlike a mutual fund, an ETF trades like a common stock on a stock exchange.

BATS is the #1 US market for ETF trading. With the addition of ARK, there are now 13 issuers with a combined 97 ETFs listed on the BATS ETF Marketplace.

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