Passionate about a new technology called ‘rapid prototyping’, and firm in his belief that it could help create a better and healthier world, Wilfried “Fried” Vancraen founded Materialise in 1990, where he remains CEO to this day. Materialise was established as the first Rapid Prototyping Service Bureau in the Benelux countries. Immediately after its foundation, the company concentrated on researching and developing solutions for transferring data to Rapid Prototyping machines, for industrial as well as medical applications.
Today, Materialise is a global company that provides open and flexible platforms that enable players in industries such as healthcare, automotive, aerospace, art and design, and consumer goods to build innovative 3D printing applications that make the world a better and healthier place.
Fried Vancraen began his career in 1985 after receiving a Master of Science in Electro-Mechanical Engineering. Working as a Research Engineer and Consultant at the Research Institute of the Belgian Metalworking Industry, Fried discovered 3D Printing.
Fried holds several patents related to the technical and medical applications of 3D Printing and remains committed to using the technology to make positive changes in people’s lives. In recent years, Fried has been awarded the RTAM/SME Industry Achievement Award, has been selected as the most influential person in Additive Manufacturing by industry professionals and TCT Magazine, and has been listed one of the five leading players in this sector by the Financial Times. He is also the recipient of a 2013 Visionaries! Award from the Museum of Art and Design in New York, and most recently, an inaugural inductee into the TCT Hall of Fame.