HANNOVER • German conglomerate Thyssenkrupp will be setting up an innovation centre for additive manufacturing, also known as 3D printing, in Singapore, its first outside of Germany.
This was shared with Senior Minister of State for Trade and Industry Koh Poh Koon at the Hannover Messe trade show on Wednesday.
While the centre is still in the early stages of planning, Thyssenkrupp expects to launch it within this year, Dr Koh told The Business Times.
"We're quite happy to welcome them to set this up in Singapore, because as an ecosystem that has maturity in advanced manufacturing across diverse sectors, we provide a very interesting ecosystem for them to innovate using some of the additive manufacturing techniques, and hopefully to meet some of the market needs in these other sectors of advanced manufacturing," Dr Koh said.
The future Singapore Additive Manufacturing TechCenter Hub, which the Singapore Economic Development Board supports, will serve as the regional hub for the company's Mulheim TechCenter, the company said in a separate press statement yesterday.
The centre aims to unlock the potential of additive manufacturing for customers locally and across the Asia-Pacific. Together with the existing TechCenter in Germany, it will focus on 3D printing solutions in metal and plastic technologies for customers in automotive, capital goods, chemical, mining and other heavy industries.
The hub will also host additive manufacturing engineers who will work with those in Germany to develop various products and solutions which leverage this innovation.
The centre will benefit Singapore by creating jobs for Singaporeans that expose them to more advanced technologies, and could result in products useful in Singapore as well as other parts of South-east Asia.
"They can also become a place where both SMEs (small and medium-sized enterprises) and MNCs (multinational corporations) can lean on their capabilities to co-innovate and find new offerings, products and services," Dr Koh added. "In that sense, they enrich our advanced manufacturing ecosystem."
Dr Donatus Kaufmann, member of the executive board of Thyssenkrupp responsible for technology and innovation, added that the new hub not only strengthens Thyssenkrupp's presence and operations in Singapore and the Asia-Pacific, but also gives the company "the opportunity to benefit from Singapore's innovation ecosystem and to serve new customers in the Asia-Pacific region".