FabGate is the first 3D-Printing & Rapid Prototyping marketplace where you can print your 3D models. On the one hand, you can get your printed products faster than using the other online 3D-printing services. On the other hand, it brings more orders to the manufacturers and therefore creates revenue from the free capacity of their 3D printers.My co-founder Ehsan, who is one of my friends for many years, and I have built this whole project by ourselves. A couple of weeks after launching the webpage in December 2012, FabGate attracted around 1000 users and more than 10 companies that are offering 3D printing with various materials. You can choose from different sorts of plastic and metal, e.g. gold and titanium.
The process of using FabGate is very easy. After uploading a 3D model, you can simply look up a list of manufacturers which are able to produce your model with the material of your choice. Because the manufacturers are local, the shipping time can be reduced to days instead of weeks. We want to make the whole process of manufacturing as easy as clicking one button. Furthermore we want to facilitate the interaction between the 3D model creators and the manufacturers.In general, Ehsan and I want to give people new tools in their hands so they can have an impact in this world and push the borders of what is possible. We hope that FabGate is going to be such a tool for manufacturing products.
I am a non-professional 3D designer and when I wanted to print my 3D designs, I was not happy with the current online printing services, because they delivered the products after 4-6 weeks. Hence we started to work on this marketplace that solves the problem by giving printing orders to local manufacturers.
Actually we have already experienced our first big problem which was the designing of the logo. It took us way longer than a design of the logo should take, we were reviewing it with the designer for almost 100 times. Even though it has cost us lots of money, at the end we have thrown it away. Now we just use a standard font. It is easy to read and easy to remember. It was a good exercise with stuff that can go wrong and now we’re moving fast and smoothly.
At the moment we are beta testing the webpage and receiving an enormous amount of feedback, which we are really thankful for and using that feedback to make our platform better. We want to be super agile, so we try to update FabGate at least twice a week. In the next weeks we will add some cool features, that we are currently working on. But we are slowly getting to the point when it is too much workload for two people and therefore we have started to look for investors and new people to join us.
The coding of FabGate started in a café. Soon enough we felt we need a calm place for work and therefore moved to the betahaus. I have been working in the betahaus for almost a year and love the fact, that I get to meet many people with various backgrounds and talk the business over with them. For instance we met Martin, who is a really cool guy. He gave us some tips on the website’s minimalistic design that we actually implemented. Max, who is a great lawyer and a co-founder of the betahaus also helped us a lot. I am a coffee addict, so I really appreciate the free coffee, too. The great thing about this place is, that there is always something going on. Thus anytime you want to take a break from work and socialize, you can come to the cafe to meet other people or attend something that is just happening around. There is a variety of stuff you can do in the betahaus. It never gets boring.
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Probably the biggest benefit of coworking is community and events. Now we know it may not be the first thing you’re looking for as you seek out your next office space, but bear with us.
Imagine using your lunch breaks to chat with someone in your industry. Meeting freelance developers at after-work beers. Networking with investors at BETAPITCH. Pitching at our weekly betabreakfast and getting support and feedback on your new ideas.
betahaus has spent the last 10 years cultivating a community of people who we genuinely like working with. And when you join, your team will become a part of it, too.
" People matter! Community was always what we were all about. ‘’
In June we launched #PeopleInbeta - our monthly blog post series in which our Content Manager - Vihra interviewed teams and freelancers from the betahaus community to present the variety of creatives we have in ‘haus, to understand their missions and get some useful advice for our audience. We talked on topics such as sustainability (with PlanA) , decentralized digital identity (with JOLOCOM), curated music experiences (with Bespoke Sounds), freelance photography (with Sara Herrlander), full-stack development (with Obst Digital), design (with LAUDO) and much more.
In the summer, we launched a couple of new events in Neukölln like Freelancers, Unite!, The Backyard Sessions and My friend’s BBQ.
Freelancers, Unite! developed as our productive coworking session with freelancers from in and outside the ‘haus. Once a month, we picked an important freelance topic (such as taxes, time-management, etc) and invited experts to give us insights on the topic. We saw so many new faces and had the chance to come back closer to where we started from - the freelance, grassroots culture.
Another event, which started in July (and turned out to be our favourite events) were The Backyard Sessions. Organised by our queen of Neukölln - Robbin – the Backyard Sessions are our creative evenings with live music jams, movie screenings and cocktails.
This last event was hilarious because for quite some time, nobody knew exactly who organised it or invited them. The friend was throwing a BBQ for the community in the garden and this led to all our members joining and staying after for a beer or two with us.
‘’My favourite moment this year was the second friends bbq which was actually cancelled because of the rain forecast. But despite the bad weather, people show up and it turned into a super nice intimate evening with Elizaveta and Paul giving a garden concert.’’ - Robbin (Community Manager, betahaus)
''In July, it was great how the casual after-work BBQ turned into an impromptu acoustic blues jam session with Elizavetta Barsegova and Paul, who have the voice of an angel. Actually, all of the My Friend's BBQ's and Backyard Sessions were AWESOME.’’ - Paige (Head of Marketing, betahaus)
This year we released a new event format in Kreuzberg called ‘’The betaSalon’’. It's an open panel discussion which aims to give stage to important topics and give free speech on them. The fist one we did on the EU elections, last month we talked about changemakers, but our favourite one for this season stays ‘’Mother + Founder’’ where we partnered with FemGems podcast and recorded a live podcast episode for them having Madeleine Gummer von Mohl (betahaus co-founder), Kristine Zeller (co-creater of ooshi period underwear) and Luisa Hoffman on the stage.
Every September, our co-founders take part in the Techfestival. in Copenhagen, spending a few days disconnecting from the daily life and focusing on creating a better, more human-centered tech future. This year the think tank which included our co-founders Madeleine and Max came up with the TechPledge. The Tech Pledge was made to emphasize the need for a new direction in tech. Similar to the Hippocratic oath for doctors, the Tech Pledge is a promise to make tech a force for good and ensure responsible and sustainable tech leadership. It’s a commitment to driving a new direction in technology.
One of the most exciting projects for betahausX this year (which is also continuing in 2020) is their new startup challenge called The Werder Lab - a global startup competition that aims to reimagine the way clubs like Werder work with athletes, fans and partners.
This year couldn’t end without us having our favourite events - the end-of-the-year holiday party and the BETAPITCH Global Finals. On the 6th of December we saw the 9 finalists of the regional BETAPITCH competitions pitching in front of our jury. Congrats to Troy from Hamburg for winning the big prize.
We finished the year at our Holiday Party celebrating anything and everything at betahaus | Neukölln together with our members, friends of friends and our favourite artists from Passiflora LIVE, Tapete and Kotoe.
Thank you for being with us in 2019. It's been a crazy big year for us and it wouldn't been possible without your support, trust and the hard work of our amazing team. Have an amazing holiday time and we'll see you again in 2020.