3D printers are actively used in the most various spheres, starting from medicine to education.
However, in Armenia such printers are not that widely-spread. Moreover, many residents of the country don’t know yet why they are needed and in which spheres they can be used.
Artur Khojabaghyan, one of the founders of AugmentAr Armenia startup, which produces 3D printers, told the aforementioned to Armenian News – NEWS.am.
“Currently, 3D printers can be used in jewelry (this is already done in Armenia), medicine, industry and construction. They can also play an important role in the educational process of children: if the children have an access to 3D printers, they will be able to print robots, work on interesting projects and learn 3D modeling. 3D printers may have many appliances: given the access to such a printer, one begins to think broader, come up with new ideas and experiment,” Khojabaghyan noted.
The Goris-based startup is the first one in Armenia to produce 3D printers. The company has overall 12 specialists, only 4 of which work on printers: the rest are engaged in programming and web design.
Currently, the main client of AugmentAr 3D printers—called Bzez—is the UITE NGO, for which 90 items have been assembled. Another four printers were assembled upon the order of private people. This is, of course, not enough for the entire country,” Khojabaghyan said.
The 3D printers produced in Armenia are, of course, cheaper than the European ones but more expensive than the Chinese printers. According to Khojabaghyan, the low price of Chinese printers is conditioned by their low quality, but not all clients understand this. Apart from this, the local producer should have guarantees and service centers, which also affects the price of the production: the majority of Chinese printers have no warranties and if they break, the client cannot apply to the producer, thus having to find other masters capable of fixing them.
Given relevant funding in the future, Artur Khojabaghyan and his friends are going to improve their printers and begin producing new ones. In particular, they want to create a printer printing by chocolate, as well as a large printer taht can print 1-1.5 meter accessories, which can be used in machine engineering and construction.
AugmentAr representatives came to attend the Sevan StartUp Summit 2017 in the hope of finding new partners and investments, which will help the project development and more active application of 3D printing in the most diverse spheres of Armenia. Apart from this, they want to collect 20-30 printers: it will be possible to use part of them for different orders, while the rest will allow to enter the market more confidently and begin looking for purchasers.
Annual Sevan StartUp Summit organized by StartUp Armenia Foundation is held on the beach of Lake Sevan from July 24 to 31. Over 1,000 participants, including 100 startups and teams of developers, investors, venture companies and mentors from over 10 countries of the world, take part in the event.
According to the organizers, the event is aimed at creating new ways of cooperation for startups and exchange of experience. The format of the summit is unique: during seven days all the participants, including the mentors and investors, share their household, communicate and participate in different competitions and events. Consequently, new companies will be established and many projects will be able to find investors and enter the market in the near future. Moreover, there will be competitions, whose winners will get over 20 monetary and other prizes.