Milton Keynes, UK, 2015-3-18 — /EPR Retail News/ — Argos today announced the launch of a collection of inspirational jewellery which can be customised and then 3D printed to order, before being dispatched directly to the customer. The technology that makes this happen is powered by Digital Forming, 3D print experts and partners in the project. The R&D project has also been supported by Innovate UK, the technology experts who support, fund and connect innovative businesses to help create economic growth.
Using the newly launched website, budding designers will be able to select accessories from a range of 10 items initially, add their own personal touches, and then 3D printers will bring the designs to life and deliver the bespoke creations in just 21 working days. Jewellery will be priced from £50 to £220 and the collection includes bangles, pendants, rings, cufflinks and earrings.
Neil Tinegate, Head of Digital Innovation at Argos, said: “There has been a lot of excitement about 3D printing and we are just beginning to explore the mainstream application of these techniques. We are launching the site this week with our partners in the consortium as a trial, to gauge how customers want to engage with it. We will assess results and learnings to inform future decision making in due course.”
“We are excited by the potential for our customers to get creative in developing their own bespoke products. We are starting with jewellery, but see applications for lighting, homewares and other areas in the future.”
Lisa Harouni, CEO of Digital Forming, added “Argos is leading the way with this project and we are proud to be working with them to bring new 3D printed bespoke products to consumers. We have used revolutionary manufacturing processes to power this website and we are excited by the potential to engage customers in a new way – by inviting them into the design process of their products.”
The range is now available at http://custom.argos.co.uk/.
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The 3DP Bridge project
This website will test the findings of the 3DP Bridge project to unlock design freedoms in additive manufacturing. It is a collaborative partnership of four partners; Argos, Digital Forming, EOS and Assa Ashuach Studio who are leaders in the 3D design and print/additive manufacturing sectors. The findings from this trial will inform further R&D to allow it to be scaled in future to a full commercial offer.
The exploitation of 3D printing as a manufacturing process and its use by mainstream retailers has big advantages but has been seriously inhibited by the additive manufacturing process to date preventing adoption. This project brings together expertise across the relevant sectors for all stages of the process to solve the problems in a live environment using the Argos model. It seeks to resolve issues in the additive manufacturing or 3D printing process/supply chain and the way this currently inhibits design and freedom of customisation for retail customers,
Argos is a leading UK digital retailer, offering around 50,000 products through www.argos.co.uk, its growing mobile channels, stores and over the telephone.
Argos continues to be the UK’s largest high street retailer online with around 123m customer transactions a year through its stores and 738 million website and app visits in the 12 months to February 2014. Customers can take advantage of Argos’ convenient Check & Reserve service available through its network of 756 stores across the UK and Republic of Ireland.
In the financial year to February 2014, Argos sales were £4.1 billion and it employed some 29,000 people across the business. Argos is part of Home Retail Group, the UK’s leading home and general merchandise retailer.
About Digital Forming
Digital Forming is a UK based company developing software and design solutions for businesses tapping into the new generation of 3D printing processes. Working at the point where technology meets designs, Digital Forming aims to revolutionise the customisation of lifestyle products with 3D printing. It was founded in 2009 by partners from science, creative, and business backgrounds; Lisa Harouni, Dr Siavash Mahdavi, Assa Ashuach and Nicolas de Cordes.
For further information, please contact email@example.com.
Follow us on Twitter @DigitalForming.
About Innovate UK
Innovate UK is the new name for the Technology Strategy Board – the UK’s innovation agency. Taking a new idea to market is a challenge. Innovate UK funds, supports and connects innovative businesses through a unique mix of people and programmes to accelerate sustainable economic growth. For further information visit http://www.gov.uk/innovateuk.
As the UK’s innovation agency, one of the main roles of Innovate UK is to achieve business and economic growth for the UK. One way the organisation supports this is through funding innovative Collaborative Research and Development (CR&D) projects. Collaborative research and development (R&D) encourages businesses and researchers to work together on innovative projects in strategically important areas of science, engineering and technology – from which successful new products, processes and services can emerge, contributing to business and economic growth.
Find out more about the CR&D programme here: http://www.gov.uk/innovateuk.