Robot 3D construction printer company COBOD International has recorded a profit for the second year in a row after growing almost 100%.
Bosses of the Danish firm, which produces large 3D printers for robot printing of buildings and wind turbine towers in concrete, also forecast even higher growth in 2021, despite the COVID-19 pandemic ‑ vowing to more than double 2020 revenue.
In 2017, COBOD International (COBOD) unveiled what it claimed was Europe's first 3D printed building, The BOD in Nordhavn, Copenhagen. COBOD's 3D printers are behind several other claimed records, including the world's first 3D printed concrete wind turbine tower together with GE Renewables. The firm also claims to have built Europe's first 3D printed two and three-storey buildings, India's first 3D printed two-storey building, and Africa's first 3D printed buildings.
The 3D printed buildings made by COBOD's printers have gained considerable global attention, and videos of Europe's first 3D printed two and three-storey buildings have thus been viewed 500,000 times and 1.6 million times, respectively, on YouTube.
The company does not disclose revenue in its annual accounts, but the accounts show that the gross profit increased from DKK 4.9 million (€658,684) to DKK 9.3 million (€1.25mn) between 2019 and 2020. The accounts also show that the company's order intake for the first few months of 2021 exceeded the total order intake for the whole of last year.
Henrik Lund-Nielsen, founder and general manager of COBOD, said: "Just over three months into the new year, we have actually received 200% of the order quantity for printers received throughout all of 2020, so we are sure that we will continue our significant growth well into 2021, when we will at least double again. The good result is not least due to our large global customers, and in 2021 they will continue to play a key role in our growth, together with smaller, more entrepreneurial companies wanting to be part of the future. Due to the high growth, we have had to increase our manning to more than 40 employees. At the end of this year, we expect to be around 60."
COBOD counts some of the world's largest companies as customers, including American GE, French LafargeHolcim, the world's largest producer of cement and concrete; L&T Construction, India's largest contractor group with 135,000 employees; and PERI Group, a globally leading German supplier of formwork equipment and scaffolding for the construction industry.
In 2018, COBOD succeeded in getting PERI in as a minority shareholder, and PERI expresses similar satisfaction over COBOD's 2020 result and the growth.
Dr. Fabian Meyer-Brötz, head of Robot 3D Construction Printing at PERI Group, said: "When in 2018 we decided to invest in a manufacturer of 3D construction printers, we did so because we believed that automated robot 3D printing of buildings would become an important part of the future of construction. It was also crucial for us to find the company that had the best technology and the most talented people. COBOD's growth, financial results and performance since then have shown that our assumptions were correct and that we looked right with regards to COBOD as the leading 3D construction printing company on a global level."