Fast Radius, a Chicago manufacturing startup that helps companies bring products to market, has opened a satellite office in a manufacturing innovation center on Goose Island.
The office opening is part of a new partnership Fast Radius has inked with MxD, the new name for UI Labs and its Digital Manufacturing and Design Innovation Institute. The name changed when the organization received a $10 million U.S. Department of Defense grant in February.
MxD, founded in 2011, offers manufacturers from around the U.S. a place to develop, deploy and commercialize solutions that address problems in the manufacturing industry. And the new partnership with Fast Radius allows for MxD to offer the tech company’s platform to members at its innovation center.
Fast Radius’ platform helps companies with additive and on-demand manufacturing, assisting with design, engineering, testing and validation—all the way through the supply chain. It helps customers create prototypes, as well as produce industrial parts at global scale.
“We’re excited to combine Fast Radius’ mission to ‘make new things possible’ with the MxD mission to help U.S. manufacturers build every part better than the last,” said MxD CEO Chandra Brown in a statement. “By including Fast Radius’ innovation platform into our manufacturing testbed, our partners will get firsthand access to additive manufacturing processes and techniques to co-create use cases and test applications for the future of manufacturing.”
Two of Fast Radius’ executives had ties to MxD when it was still known as DMDII. The startup’s CEO Lou Rassey and Chief Product Officer John Nanry served as advisors to DMDII, and Fast Radius Chief Scientist Bill King was the founding chief technology officer for DMDII.
In April 2019, Fast Radius raised a $48 million Series B round led by UPS, bringing its total funding to more than $67 million since it launched in 2015. From 2018 to 2019, Fast Radius says it saw revenue and staff triple. It now employs more than 120 people, most of whom work out of its headquarters in the West Loop.