Hilos Revolutionizes Footwear with New 3D Printing Platform


Hilos, a firm that focuses on 3D printed footwear, has disclosed its innovative production platform at Art Basel Miami Beach. The company has collaborated with fashion house Unknown Union, and its new platform named Hilos Studio symbolizes a pivotal transformation in footwear manufacturing. It enables designers and numerous brands to manufacture footwear as per demand, conforming with a high-mix, low-volume supply chain model. Such a model significantly diminishes the necessity for large inventory investments, thus reducing waste and upfront costs.

The innovative technology of Hilos combines the outsole, midsole, and insole into a single unit that can be 3D printed. This results in an improved material efficiency and accelerates the speed of production. Moreover, it allows for extensive customization in size as well as style. The company’s latest shift broadens its scope from women’s fashion footwear to several categories such as technical outdoor and luxury shoes.

Hilos’ methods were studied in collaboration with Yale University, and it was revealed that compared to traditional footwear manufacturing, these methods lower emissions by 50% and diminish water usage by 99%. The growth and innovations of the company are backed by industry experts like Jonathan Cheung, the former designer of Levi’s, and Eric Sprunk, Nike’s former COO, who have recently become members of the Hilos board.

In March, Hilos collected $3 million aimed at product expansion and forging brand partnerships, escalating its total raised funds to $7.1 million. Investments were gathered from venture firms and industry veterans, highlighting the increasing curiosity towards sustainable, on-demand production technologies. The platform could potentially establish a standard for future industry, leading to a wider understanding and adoption of on-demand production models, not only in footwear but in additional sectors.

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