#SmallBiz BUZZ – 3D Printing: Will It Shift the Landscape of Doing Business in Colorado?

Security Alert3D printing has been around for 20 years. However, with recent technology advances, the applications are quickly becoming accessible to small businesses and entrepreneurs in Colorado. A 3D printer uses plastic, ceramic or other filaments similiar to the way a traditional printer uses ink. The technology  enables a user to instantly transform a digital blueprint into a shape or product. The early applications range from the printing of prosthetic limbs for bomb victims, building NASA rockets from space, to the reconstruction of historical monuments.  The Micro 3D Printer (a $299 model built for home-use) raised over $1 million on Kickstarter in a single day.  Simply put, there is both high utility and high demand in both private and commercial sectors for 3D-printers.

WHY THE BUZZ?
Some are calling it a shift as disruptive to the manufacturing industry as the industrial revolution. Others are predicting its impact could help move offshore manufacturing back to the United States. 3D-printing empowers companies with the ability to manufacture their own prototypes, parts, and in some cases – entire products. There’s no expensive molds and virtually instaneous delivery. The versatility of 3D-printers also makes them a viable option in almost any sector.

This month, the 3D Printing Conference in New York City showcased the emerging applications of the technology. For example, Systems and Materials Research Corporation is currently exploring options to 3D-print food items for NASA astronauts. Ultimately, companies that are successfully able to leverage 3D-print technology are able to save thousands by keeping production internal instead of relying on third parties to provide components at inflated prices. The video below shows some of the amazing applications displayed at this month’s conference on 3D printing.

HOW DOES THIS IMPACT MY COLORADO BUSINESS?
Colorado’s growing affinity with tech start-ups, workers, and education programs makes it well positioned to embrace the 3-D sector. As recently featured on 9News, 3D printing is quickly emerging as a cost-saving step for some local businesses. Local entreprenuers are getting more access to commercial 3D printers at collaborative workspaces around the Front Range.  University of Colorado researchers are testing a process that 3D prints objects with shape-memory polymer filament that can reshape when exposed to heat, water, etc.

From office supplies to use in product development, the 3D printing sector is expected to ultimately impact every small business in the next decade. The potential applications for streamlining operations and product innovation are fun to ponder. The bottom-line impact to your company may not be far off. If you are not evaluating this technology, chances are your competitor is.

Last Chance to Register for 2014 MADE IN COLORADO Manufacturing Forum in Downtown Denver on April 23

Citywide Banks and BKD, LLP will be the presenting sponsors for Colorado Biz Magazine’s 2014 Made in Colorado Manufacturing Forum on April 23, 2014 at the refurbished McNichols Building in the heart of Downtown Denver’s Civic Center Park. The second annual event will showcase the achievements of Colorado-based manufacturers and discuss solutions to issues challenging [...]

#SmallBiz BUZZ – BITCOIN: How It Could Impact Your Colorado Business

Bitcoin is positioning itself as a next-generation currency that is virtual in all aspects.  There are currently about 12 million of a maximum 21 million bitcoins in circulation around the world. Unlike the U.S. dollar or the Euro, the value of one bitcoin is not based on any central banking authority or government. Enthusiasts claim its direct person-to-person [...]

HEARTBLEED Bug Alert Offers Another Reminder to Stay Vigilant against Fraud

Citywide Banks continues to investigate and review all of its security systems. However, following an initial review, there is no indication of any security breach or specific vulnerability on its banking websites and network related to the Heartbleed bug. The bank does encourage customers to continue to take normal precautions by changing passwords frequently, monitoring [...]

Citywide Banks Releases New Version of Its MOBILE BANKING App

Citywide Banks has released a new upgrade for its mobile banking app for iPhone, iPad, and Droid devices. Existing Mobile OnlineOption™ users will be prompted to download the new version next time they log into their mobile banking app. Citywide Banks customers not yet enrolled can setup mobile banking through their OnlineOption online banking account. [...]

Citywide Banks Participating in Food Drive April 7-11 to Benefit Jewish Family Service Food Pantry

Citywide Banks is proud to support the first Easter/Passover Denver Community Food Drive benefiting the Jewish Family Service Weinberg Food Pantry. The goal is to collect 20,000 pounds of non-perishable food to help feed local children and families in need. Jewish Family Service, a local nonprofit, has partnered with The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day [...]

FOOTHILLS ANIMAL SHELTER Wins Top $5,000 Donation in Citywide Banks Charity Hand-Up Contest

It was “paws up” for Foothills Animal Shelter as it led the pack early and finished strong to win the Citywide Banks Charity Hand-Up Contest. The 15-day Facebook contest, which ended on March 31st, helped raise awareness for seven Colorado nonprofits nominated by Citywide Banks employees. Foothills Animal Shelter will receive a $5,000 cash donation [...]

LAST CHANCE TO VOTE for Favorite Colorado Cause in Tight Race for Citywide Banks Charity Hand-Up Contest

The final push is happening now on social media in the Citywide Banks Charity Hand-Up Contest. The 15-day Facebook contest will end at midnight on Monday, March 31, with one local charity receiving a $5,000 cash donation, and six other charities splitting an additional $2,500 based on final vote standings.

As of Friday morning, Foothills [...]

Citywide Banks Presenting 2014 MADE IN COLORADO Manufacturing Forum on April 23 in Downtown Denver

Citywide Banks and BKD, LLP will be the presenting sponsors for Colorado Biz Magazine’s 2014 Made in Colorado Manufacturing Forum on April 23, 2014 at the refurbished McNichols Building in the heart of Downtown Denver’s Civic Center Park. The second annual event will showcase the achievements of Colorado-based manufacturers and discuss solutions to issues challenging [...]

SECURITY REMINDER – Protecting You & Your Business from Fraud

The IRS recently released new information about a tax-fraud phone scam where callers misrepresent themselves as IRS representatives and try to get social security account numbers and other personal information.  Their goal is to steal your tax refund. It’s just the latest reminder for individuals and businesses to remain on guard against fraudsters and cybercriminals. [...]

GAME ON! Citywide Banks CHARITY HAND-UP CONTEST Now through March 31 – $7,500 to Charities, Voter Prizes, and More Awareness for Seven Colorado Causes

Now through midnight on March 31, 2014, Citywide Banks invites Colorado’s Front Range community to enter-to-win prizes and raise awareness for seven Colorado causes in its 15-day Charity Hand-Up Contest on Facebook. The community is invited to participate by voting for a charity nominee and sharing their support through Facebook and other social media.  The charity [...]

(Contest Nominee) JEFFERSON CENTER FOR MENTAL HEALTH Brings Hope to Those Facing Emotional Hardship

Seven Colorado charities have been nominated in Citywide Banks’ Charity Hand-Up Contest taking place on Facebook from March 17-31, 2014. The local community is invited to vote for a nominee and enter prize drawings. $7,500 in cash donations will be split between nominees based on the voting results. CLICK HERE for voting page

Jefferson [...]

(Contest Nominee) CANCER LEAGUE OF COLORADO is an All-Volunteer Organization Devoted to Finding Cure for Cancer

Seven Colorado charities have been nominated in Citywide Banks’ Charity Hand-Up Contest taking place on Facebook from March 17-31, 2014. The local community is invited to vote for a nominee and enter prize drawings. $7,500 in cash donations will be split between nominees based on the voting results. CLICK HERE for voting page

There are [...]

(Contest Nominee) CENTRO SAN JUAN DIEGO Helping to Empower Denver’s Growing Hispanic Community

Seven Colorado charities have been nominated in Citywide Banks’ Charity Hand-Up Contest taking place on Facebook from March 17-31, 2014. The local community is invited to vote for a nominee and enter prize drawings. $7,500 in cash donations will be split between nominees based on the voting results. CLICK HERE for voting page

During 2003, [...]

Citywide Banks Raises $4,475 for MHCLF Affordable Housing in Social Media Match Campaign

During the month of February, and in conjunction with the bank’s 2014 Economic Forecast event, Citywide Banks raised $4,475 for the Mile High Community Loan Fund (MHCLF). MHCLF is a 14-year-old, 501(c)3 organization that invests in affordable housing and other community assets that create economic opportunity for low-income individuals and communities in Denver, [...]