The world needs new homes — two billion of them over the next eighty years. The U.S. alone has a shortage of about five million homes.
The key is to find ways to build these homes faster and more affordably, without sacrificing quality. This is a huge hurdle within the sixteen-trillion-dollar construction market.
That’s where 3D printing comes into the picture, a market projected to reach forty billion dollars by 2027. Certain 3D printers can be used to build entire homes faster and at a fraction of the cost of traditional construction methods.
This is a growing trend. So if you’re looking to invest in it, why not start your search with a company responsible for the largest 3D-printed building on Earth? That achievement belongs to a startup called Apis Cor.
Apis Cor is a construction-technology company that’s created patented robotic technology. This technology can build walls of standard single-family homes within a week (compared to five to eight weeks using traditional construction methods). Using these robots, construction companies can erect entire homes in as little as two months, compared to up to a year to build one now.
Apis Cor’s business model is straightforward. It leases out its robotic printers to construction companies and sells its 3D print material. Monthly printer leases are $9,000 and material is sold at seven dollars a square foot. That translates to about $8,400 in material costs for a 1,200-square-foot home.
3D-printed walls using Apis Cor’s machines and material are natural-disaster resistant and structurally identical to concrete walls. The material and walls have been independently tested at the University of Connecticut and Briggs Engineering in Boston.
Bottom line: Apis Cor’s technology enables for three times faster construction and up to a thirty-percent reduction in costs. But quality remains the same.
Apis Cor has been issued four patents for its technology and deployed its robots in the U.S. and internationally. More than 100 construction companies have signed Letters of Intent — these companies build an average of 4,000 homes a year — and 183 inquiries have been made to reserve the company’s 3D printers.
Apis Cor aims to have 400 printers in operations by 2027, and each one can deliver at least 20,000 new homes annually.
Nikita has extensive experience in robotics and construction.
His first company specialized in manufacturing industrial machines and composite materials used for construction. From there, he founded his own construction company.
Notably, Nikita was asked to complete two multi-million-dollar projects related to building infrastructure for the 2014 Olympic Games. The projects involved manufacturing and deploying concrete and metal signs, and his work was recognized by the Olympics’ Organizing Committee.
Nikita has been named one of Inc. Magazine’s “50 Emerging Global Entrepreneurs to Watch” and completed the Alchemist startup accelerator program.
Prior to starting Apis Cor, Anna worked for the Forbes Business Council, where she shared insights on construction 3D printing applications. Before that, she was a member of Arisan’s Asylum, a Boston-based non-profit dedicated to teaching people about metal machining and manufacturing techniques.
Notably, she worked alongside Nikita to complete the projects for the 2014 Olympic Games and earned a Bachelor’s degree in Space Physics.