Gov. Doug Burgum today announced that manufacturing and business operations for the popular LulzBot brand of 3D printers are being relocated to Fargo after the business was acquired last month by longtime Fargo entrepreneur Ron Bergan.
“This is an exciting day for Fargo and the entire region as we welcome a business with cutting-edge technology and dozens of jobs to North Dakota to build upon the state’s flourishing entrepreneurial ecosystem,” Burgum said. “We’re grateful to Ron for continuing to believe in North Dakota’s people and invest in our economy.”
Founded in 2011, LulzBot was the brand of 3D printers manufactured by Aleph Objects Inc., a company based in Loveland, Colo., that employed 113 employees prior to experiencing financial hardship. In November, Fargo Additive Manufacturing Equipment 3D LLC (FAME 3D) acquired all assets of Aleph Objects Inc. with the objective of moving all business functions to Fargo.
Thirteen of the original employees will be relocating to Fargo, and FAME 3D plans to hire 50 new employees as soon as possible for light assembly, customer service, support and other positions, with training offered, said Bergan, who sold Fargo Assembly Co. in 2017 after owning the business with his wife, Mary Alice, for 42 years. Bergan said he hopes to grow the business beyond its peak in Colorado.
To accommodate the LulzBot manufacturing line, FAME 3D is actively outfitting the vacant building at 1001 25th St. N, the former corporate headquarters for Vanity clothing. The building is located in one of 25 areas of North Dakota that Burgum designated in April 2018 as Opportunity Zones under the federal Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017. Opportunity Zones are designed to spur economic development and job creation in distressed areas throughout the country by providing tax benefits to investors who invest eligible capital into the communities. While Bergan is still exploring whether to participate in the Opportunity Zones program, Burgum hopes the zones will help attract similar investments in other communities.
The LulzBot line of desktop 3D printers is renowned worldwide for its quality of printing and ease of use, Bergan said, noting their attention to detail and commitment to quality has won numerous awards. A LulzBot printer was recently featured at the end of a segment about STEM education for girls on ABC’s “Good Morning America” program.
For more information, visit www.lulzbot.com.