The Prague Stock Exchange attracts smaller companies. A manufacturer of cartridges for 3D printers from Hulín is interested in the PX Start market

  • In May, the Prague Stock Exchange will open to small and medium-sized companies, for which it is launching the PX Start market.
  • Four companies will offer their shares to investors before July.
  • The last of the four firms to enter the market is Fillamentum, a manufacturer of cartridges for 3D printers from Hulín.
We are going public: Josef Doleček, the co-founder of a company producing cartridges for 3D printers, wants to compete with rivals such as BASF or Verbatim. author: Tomáš Tesař

The Prague Stock Exchange will begin to better reflect the true structure of the Czech economy. Small manufacturing companies from various fields plan to offer their shares under the new regime. The main market now mainly trades in the shares of banks and energy companies. Newcomers will include, for example, a fast-growing manufacturer of cartridges for 3D printers.

For these new companies, the PSE has launched a separate trading market called PX Start. Unlike the main market, which works daily, the shares of smaller companies will be traded at one-off auctions. Their number will be adjusted by the PSE according to the interest shown by investors. 

By July, four companies want to offer shares on the stock exchange. On Monday, Fillamentum, a manufacturer of cartridges for 3D printers, is to announce its interest. The company, based in Hulín, wants to raise up to CZK 30 million for a fifth of its shares. The first auction, which is planned for mid-May, has already been joined by the Prague-based Primoco UAV and the footwear and clothing company Prabos from the Zlín region. At the June auction, Hub Ventures, a Prague-based operator of shared offices, will be featured. Since the era of privatization in the 1990s, there has not been a year in which so many companies decided to list their shares on the Prague Stock Exchange.

The story of Fillamentum from Hulín proves that in the Czech economy, which is heavily dependent on the automotive industry, it is possible to shift an automotive supplier to another sector.

Fillamentum and its predecessor, Parzlich, have expanded the original production of polymer components, including car window parts and industrial hoses and tubes, to include plastic filaments for 3D printers.

“Because they are still plastics, in the case of 3D printing it was an extension of our activities rather than a step into uncharted territory,” said Josef Doleček, the CEO and co-founder of the company, in an interview with HN.

Fillamentum has been producing 3D printer cartridges for five years, surfing the wave of the rapidly growing popularity of hobby printers, which are not primarily intended for industrial production.

“In the past, 3D printing was more a matter of enthusiasts, but that is changing, and we can see that large companies are also starting to use hobby printers,” Doleček said and mentioned three-dimensional printing for industrial robot grippers as an example.

At present, the production of printing cartridges that are basically multicoloured filaments resembling fishing lines with two different diameters (1.75 and 2.85 mm) accounts for most of Fillamentum’s turnover. The company aims to become one of the leaders in the field.

“There are many filament manufacturers, but we want to compete with the likes of BASF and Verbatim,” Doleček said, referring to a German chemical concern and a U.S. consumer electronics manufacturer.

The United States is Fillamentum’s largest market, followed by Germany and other large European countries.

Mr. Doleček estimates that this year, the company will reach total sales of approximately CZK 62 million, of which the 3D printing filaments will account for CZK 25 million. Last year’s turnover was CZK 35 million, including CZK 15 million for the printing business.

“We want to use the capital primarily to expand our plant in Hulín and also to start production in the United States,” says Doleček.