Panda Robotics has just announced that they will be closing their Kickstarter early and seeking private funding. This is sure to bring mixed emotions in the 3D printing world. The text of their statement is below (or here):
"A lot has happened during these three weeks of our Kickstarter campaign. We have been blown away by the overwhelming support we have received from everyone. We have been able to witness first-hand – for the first time – the sheer excitement and enthusiasm that exists for a 3d printer for the masses. We’ve been featured on BNN, the National Post, CTV News Network, TechCrunch, The National, and a myriad of blog posts and tech articles throughout the Internet. We had no idea any of this would happen, and at times it felt a bit surreal. We had to shake ourselves, and wonder “is this really happening?” All of this makes us feel that, just maybe, we could be that little engine that could.
|Via Panda Robotics|
But amidst all the excitement, we’ve had to make a very difficult decision. It breaks our hearts to do it, but we’ve decided to end our Kickstarter campaign early. Please let us explain why.
In the past weeks, we’ve received requests from institutions like universities, resellers, distributors and individuals who want to buy final PandaBots in bulk. This is wonderful, but we don’t want our Kickstarter backers, those who put their money on the line for us, to settle for a beta product so we can build a better product for all those who waited. Our wish is for our backers’ experience with Panda Robotics to be free from the inevitable concerns that arise from beta products. This will ensure you will be able to save your money and purchase the PandaBot when the final product is ready. To achieve these ends, we are in the process of seeking alternative forms of funding in order to manufacture and certify the production run.
It goes without saying that we are truly grateful to all our backers on Kickstarter. Thank you. It really is your belief in us and your support of our vision that makes us want to succeed. The last thing we want to do is to let you down. We will be providing to all of our backers a Panda Robotics t-shirt and a Panda Robotics sticker as a thank you for supporting us during our Kickstarter campaign, plus a $200 coupon that can be applied towards a PandaBot after we have gone through final certifications and can promise you a product you'll love and enjoy for a long time.
For now, please stay with us. We can't do this without you. We’d love to share with you our progress over the following months.
Please follow us on Twitter(http://twitter.com/pandarobotics), join us on Facebook(http://www.facebook.com/pandarobotics) or contact us with your email(firstname.lastname@example.org) and we will add you to a mailing list for updates.
With all of your support, we hope to have production PandaBots available for you in the first half of 2013."