Proto Labs was founded in 1999 by Larry Lukis, a successful entrepreneur and computer geek who wanted to radically reduce the time it took to get injection-molded plastic prototype parts. His solution was to automate the traditional manufacturing process by developing complex software that communicated with a network of mills and presses. As a result, plastic and metal parts could be produced in a fraction of the time it had ever taken before.
Over the next decade, we would continue to expand our injection molding envelope, introduce quick-turn CNC machining, and open global facilities in Europe and Japan.
In 2014, we launched industrial-grade 3D printing services to allow product developers, designers, and engineers an easier path to move from early prototyping to low-volume production.
And in 2017, we acquired Rapid Manufacturing to further expand our machining capabilities and introduce sheet metal fabrication into our suite of services. Yeah, we’ve been busy.
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