Who We Are
Our company was founded in 1999 by Larry Lukis, a successful entrepreneur and computer geek who wanted to radically reduce the time it took to get injection-molded plastic prototype parts. His solution was to automate the traditional manufacturing process by developing complex software that communicated with a network of mills and presses. As a result, plastic and metal parts could be produced in a fraction of the time it had ever taken before.
Over the next decade, we would continue to expand our injection molding envelope, introduce quick-turn CNC machining, and open global facilities in Europe and Japan.
In 2014, we launched industrial-grade 3D printing services to allow product developers, designers, and engineers an easier path to move from early prototyping to low-volume production.
And in 2017, we acquired Rapid Manufacturing to further expand our machining capabilities and introduce sheet metal fabrication into our suite of services. Yeah, we've been busy.
Today, Protolabs is the world’s fastest manufacturer of custom prototypes and on-demand production parts with manufacturing facilities in five countries.
A Brief History of Protolabs
Take a quick trip through our company’s past to see where we came from, where we are, and where we’re headed.
Digital Manufacturing Tour
Join us on a virtual tour of one of our digital manufacturing facilities located in Minnesota.