Consumers long since embraced platforms that facilitate short-term rentals of underused assets. Now business is getting in on the game.

As lead mechanical design engineer for BMW’s sprawling manufacturing plant in Spartanburg, South Carolina, Ryan Lambert heads a team of nine engineers responsible for designing and procuring custom jigs, fixtures and other tools for the assembly line.

Until recently, the task required spending a lot of time on the phone and email, finding local machine shops with the ability and capacity to execute his plans. That changed a few years ago when Lambert began using Xometry, a Maryland firm that’s often described as “Uber for manufacturing.”

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