MAPLE PLAIN, Minn.—Proto Labs Inc. recently won the Frost & Sullivan's 2015 Manufacturing Leadership Award for innovation in process leadership.
The award, which is in its 11th year, honors manufacturing companies and individual manufacturing leaders that are shaping the future of global manufacturing.
Frost & Sullivan's Manufacturing Leadership Council is responsible for selecting winners of the annual award, Proto Labs said, and recognized the company in the Innovation Process Leadership category for its “Cool Idea!” award program.
The Cool Idea! Award began in 2011, and was created to help bring innovative product ideas to life, said Vicki Holt, Proto Labs' president and CEO.
“Many great ideas don't get off the ground due to lack of resources and funding, and we saw an opportunity to help solve that problem by providing our additive manufacturing, CNC machining and injection molding services free of charge.”
Additionally, the award provides winners with publicity through Proto Labs' media outreach and gallery events.
Proto Labs' said its Cool Idea! award program provides gratis prototyping and short-run production services to entrepreneurs bringing inventive new product ideas to life.
“Recipients of the award are thrilled to receive it. Not only does it provide them with production-quality parts to bring their product to fruition, but it provides them with exposure. Even if an applicant is not chosen, there is still value in applying,” Holt said.
“All applicants receive scores from our respected group of judges' review, as well as written feedback, which can be largely beneficial to improving a product.”
Proto Labs has made an effort over the past year to continue to innovate by adding capabilities, she said, like same-day shipment on machined parts, new processes like metal injection molding and liquid silicone rubber molding, and a third flagship service with additive manufacturing.
“It all equates to faster and more diverse parts that allow our customers to get products to market sooner,” Holt said.