Will This 43 Year Old Win The 3D Printing Industry?

Drew Taylor

Summary:
In Episode #260 Nathan interviews Drew Taylor, founder of AstroPrint – a software and app ecosystem described as “the Android of the 3D printing world”. Listen as Nathan and Drew talk 3D printing, making money, and how to dominate an emerging niche.

Famous 5

  • Favorite Book? – Crossing the Chasm
  • What CEO do you follow? — Tony Hsieh
  • What is your favorite online tool? — Trello
  • Do you get 8 hours of sleep?— Absolutely not
  • If you could let your 20 year old self know one thing, what would it be? —I don’t know. I’m a fan of taking life’s lessons as they come.

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 01:11 – Nathan’s introduction
  • 02:00 – Welcoming Drew to the show
  • 02:30 – AstroPrint started because Drew saw that 3D printing software needed to improve
  • 03:00 – Two products: software, and cloud-based app store
  • 03:25 – Free for personal use; charge for commercial use
  • 03:50 – 70/30 split on profits from app store
  • 04:10 – Founded in 2015 – with a different idea
  • 04:45 – $150k total revenue in 2015
  • 05:00 – 9 team members
  • 05:10 – Raised $500k in convertible note
  • 05:50 – Fundraising with accelerators including BetaSpring and 500 Startups
  • 06:20 – How do you get enough sales to dominate?
  • 06:45 – Partnering with larger companies
  • 07:30 – Can provide the entire software base for existing printers
  • 09:00 – Adds value to machine by connecting it to an app system
  • 11:00 – Consumer revenue is entirely from app sales
  • 11:50 – Currently almost no revenue from app sales – expected to take off around 2017
  • 14:00 – Would be happy with a pre-money valuation of $10 million
  • 14:30 – Currently in the middle of a fundraising debt round
  • 16:40 – Famous Five

3 Key Points:

  1. Be creative about making money – what revenue models are working in other areas? How can you generate multiple revenue streams from one product?
  2. Accept that your start-up idea will change as you sound out the market. Learn from what doesn’t work.
  3. Don’t worry about making mistakes when you’re young – it’s all part of growing.

Resources Mentioned:

  • Freshbooks – The site Nathan uses to manage his invoices and accounts.
  • Host Gator – The site Nathan uses to buy his domain names and hosting for cheapest price possible.
  • Leadpages – The drag and drop tool Nathan uses to quickly create his webinar landing pages which convert at 35%+
  • Audible – Nathan uses Audible when he’s driving from Austin to San Antonio (1.5 hour drive) to listen to audio books.