YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – A high-tech Los Angeles company decided to locate its entire manufacturing center in Youngstown.
Gabriel Schlumberger and Heidi Hertel, the founders of Fitz Frames needed to find a way to get glasses that actually fit their kids.
Therefore, they invented a way to 3-D print custom frames.
“We have an app that scans your face and we take thousands of different measurements of your face. You can use our virtual try-on system in the app itself to see what the glasses are going to look like. Then you place your order. The whole process should take under five minutes and then we 3-D print them right there in Youngstown,” said Schlumberger.
The company found Youngstown after meeting with their lens supplier, Classic Optical, on Belmont Avenue.
“Youngstown is a hot bed of additive manufacturing knowledge and it was an amazing concentration, sort of serendipity that they had the building that would be the perfect space for us to set up operations,” Schlumberger said.
The company is now part of the Youngstown Business Incubator. They expect to be at full operation later this year.
The Youngstown Business Incubator has done a lot of work to establish itself as a leader of additive manufacturing in the United States. Now, leaders say it’s time to focus on what comes next.
YBI CEO Barb Ewing said the area is now recognized as one of the best places in America for additive manufacturing. Eventually, she said the region will need more to draw people in.