The new developments with UV curable inks that are specifically designed to react to the radiation of UV LEDs are remarkable. This means even more new opportunities with UV inkjet," said Deborah Hutcheson, director of marketing, Agfa Graphics, North America. "We believe that this will lead to reduction costs associated with UV inkjet and may lead to more companies entering the market.
2010 INK REPORT Even as economic uncertainty continues to impact the market, ink executives are optimistic about the future By Denise M. Gustavson Like practically every company in the wide- and grand-format industry, digital inkjet ink man- ufacturers faced significant challenges in recent years. Higher raw material costs, driven by higher crude oil costs, made life difficult for ink suppliers. The global recession led to a dramatic decrease in printing, which also led to cutbacks from ink companies. Even though printing has not recovered to pre-recession levels, there have been signs of eco- nomic improvement, and ink companies are seeing a rise in demand. According to Tim Greene, director, InfoTrends, the wide-format inkjet ink market in total is growing at approximately 6.2 percent CAGR over the present forecast period—2009 through 2014. “The market is valued now at over $3.3 billion and expected to grow to over $4.5 billion by 2014. I’d just add that right now, more than ever, there is fluidity,” said Greene. “The wide-format digital inkjet ink market isn’t where it was before the recession; however we have seen a recovery since September 2009 that has been sustained through the first quarter of this year. The demand for print has definitely begun to improve over the last several months,” said Jeffrey Nelson, product marketing manager – Inkjet Equipment and Software, Sericol Unit, Graphic Systems Division, FUJIFILM North America Corporation. “Since the start of 2010, we have seen the wide-format market start to recover from the eco- nomic downturn,” said Joan Perez Pericot, marketing director, HP Scitex. “We see three major trends emerging as a result of the crisis. First, more analog print service providers are replacing their traditional equipment with digital printing technologies to shorten runs and turnaround times. Second, there has been an industry consolidation after which most commoditized applica- tions are now concentrated in fewer and bigger PSP’s. Third, many small and medium PSP’s are looking for new profit pools and ways to differentiate their businesses and, as a result, are acquir- ing technologies that enable them to produce new and high-value-added applications.” Randy Paar, Display Graphics product manager, Océ North America reports that 2010 is “much better than last year. Companies are again busy and that’s reflected in increased ink usage and machine placements.” “The wide-format digital inkjet ink market is facing new challenges regularly. Faster printers using new technologies require matching inks that are compatible with these technologies,” said Moshe Zach, CEO, Bordeaux Digital PrintInk Ltd. “As ink manufacturer we are witnessing great- er acceptance to third party inks by customers.” “We have seen a very good rate of growth and we see continued growth in the near future. Even though North America and Europe have been slow the last 18 months or so, other parts of the world have definitely picked up the slack,” said Nitin Goswamy, president, A.T Inks. Signs of Recovery and Opportunities For ink manufacturers, there has been some good news on the economic front, as the global economic recovery has led to improving sales. But with increasing sale volumes, there has also been a shift in the market. “Traditionally, we would expect to see a jump in sales after a prolonged economic downturn. However, we are also seeing a paradigm shift in the way that small business credit is issued, and 14 WIDE-FORMAT IMAGING July 2010 EBOOK www.wide-formatimaging.com that looks to be a permanent change for our market,” that will help businesses reduce costs and maximize said Patrick Ryan, general manager, Seiko Instruments efficiencies,” said Reed Hecht, product manager, USA. “Consequently, an improved mindset by busi- Epson Professional Imaging. “Anything that helps ness owners to invest in new equipment will likely be them bring more work in-house th
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