Manufacturers investing time and money into different training programmes for their customers and prospective customers could be one of the various measures that can be taken to inject fresh blood in the industry. Canon, Xerox and more recently Ricoh are among the first companies undertaking training programmes, not only into the more effective use of technology and processes, but using consultants and experts to help printers become more innovative, capture new markets and germinate an idea from concept to sale.
The print industry these days operate in a more complex landscape. Technology is making rapid strides and business is becoming increasingly multi- faceted and dynamic. Collaborative efforts can contribute towards creating
The last year and in fact, the last six months has seen a spate of tie ups between manufacturers of the print industry, signalling changing dynamics.
With Manroland partnering with Oce to sell its inkjet digital presses, or Kodak and Konica Minolta's distribution agreement allowing both companies to sell each others' products globally or the latest two announcements of Heidelberg aligning with Ricoh and KBA-R R Donnelley's agreement on developing a new digital press, the industry is in the
Though the economy is still in the grip of a contraction, evident from the fewer visitors and exhibitors at the SGI this year, 220 participants as against 255 last year and many publications shelving titles, events like these bring the industry together and provide a platform to network, share ideas and learn about new and cost
It would be unrealistic to expect printers to continually invest in new machinery, long before the depreciated value of their old machines comes to naught, and that is why giant manufacturers will need to think out of the box to stay one step ahead of the crowd.
The route to adopt these days is, rather than new machinery launches, innovations in applications could pave the road ahead with growth and profits. A case in point is the 3-D effect for signages introduced by Digimatrix at Sign and
It has been a tumultous year globally and for the UAE as well. Leading regional and global names in the industry have been faced with reverses, mergers or closures. However most printers are of the opinion (hope?) that the recession has bottomed out in the region.
Though the production output and
Last year had its fair share of ups and downs.
IPEX, growth in ink-jet technology, packaging sectors' continued growth and increased environmental awareness were the high points of a year faced with trepidation; while closing printshops, machinery lying idle, squeezed margins and rising costs of consumables are but a few examples of distinct lows of the 12 months gone by.
Printers are entering into the new year with mixed feelings. While improvements in turnover and profit margins in the last
Loss of printing giant’s giant and prospective heir to the Heidelberg crown, Jurgen Rautert leaves behind a gaping hole too big to fill. Gossip of Rautert and chief executive Bernhard Schreier not seeing eye to eye, especially on the merger with Manorland seems to have triggered the decision.
This was preceded by news of Agfa’s takeover of most of the assets of Gandi Innovations and Canon’s bid for Oce.
The rapidly changing
Transforming direct marketing (DM) into a sustainable industry is a challenging task. Coupled with the consumer's perceptions of 'junk mail' and wasted communication, the direct mail industry has a tough challenge on its hands.
The PAS 2020 environmental standard has been conceived to tackle exactly this problem. The standard is a set of guidelines and tasks that a campaign must pass for it to be accredited as a PAS 2020-certified communication piece. The certification came into effect in
As I write this article my mind echoes with voices of people I have interviewed. The one concern at the back of everyone’s mind is how to contain the influx of online into the print industry.
While the benefits of internet are known to people like the back of their hands, print industry can never be made redundant. As one consultant succinctly put it, “How many of us would prefer to be operated by a surgeon who
Though the response for Signage, Imaging and Media Show (SIM) 2010 at Abu Dhabi was lukewarm at best, exhibitors were not complaining, either because they have paid peanuts for their booths or also because some manufacturers and distributors have showcased machinery and applications which could provide printers with food for thought, when they are ready to invest.
An example that could be cited here is ProTechnology, distributors of large format printers from Russian company, Sun Innovations.
The PrintWeek MEA team has paper on the brain this month.
With two of the biggest paper exhibitions in the region taking place in October, it’s easy to understand why. The Paper MiddleEast Exhibition took place from October 3 - 5 in Cairo, Egypt with PaperArabia following close behind from October 27 - 29 at the Dubai International Convention Centre in the UAE. Both exhibitions aim at attracting market leaders, manufacturers, converters, distributors and traders from all over the
Rather than viewing anything related to the internet as a potential threat, printers should view the apps revolution and new devices as a means of running their business better.
Twenty-thirty years ago printers walked on the shop floor to check the status of their print jobs. With the advent of reporting systems like management information systems (MIS) actual reports could be accessed through mobile devices from anywhere in the world.
Fast forward 2010. Tablet machines particularly Apple's iPad
This sentiment was echoed by a lot of printers, general managers and participants at this edition of Paper Arabia.
The lukewarm response to the expo and reduced number of visitors prompted a lot of participants to express that there were too many trade shows in the region.
Senior management we interviewed said that it made more sense to have one major annual show for the entire Middle East, something on the lines of IPEX or DRUPA; which covered all segments of the industry, from offset
Another month and another exhibition round the corner. Paper Arabia, from 2010 will become an annual event instead of once every two years.
Though paper prices are rising every quarter, the demand does not seem to subside especially from the UAE, which produced $27 million worth of paper in 2009, a 25% increase over the previous year.
Chinese companies too have increased their presence at Paper Arabia this year in a bid to capture a larger share of GCC tissue and hygiene products market from a
The above headline caught my eye and attention and set me thinking. It has been 20-25 years since Internet connected the globe, yet more and more newspapers and magazines are being published today. Global circulation of newspapers and magazines has risen and not fallen. Agreed stories of newspapers and magazines closing shop and decline in subscriptions abound, but such instances are disproportionately highlighted. When reports of tabloids like Emirates Business 24/7 going online or magazines
Printing industry is continuing its good run, with Fespa exuding an optimism similar to that observed at Ipex.
Visitors to the Munich show continued to patronise digital with 'two-thirds highlighting digital as their main focus as compared to half the visitors at Fespa 2007 in Berlin'. The theme of the show was Catch the New Wave of Innovation and it lived up to its name. Displayed at the expo were, for example, EFI's narrow web Jetrion label press that has been upgraded to take screen and pad
This edition of Ipex ended on a optimistic note inspite of ash clouds and British Airways' strike causing hiccups on the way. The optimism was evident in exhibitors and visitors, prompting many echoes of 'industry is headed towards recovery'. Though the star of the show was digital, the future lies in the coalition of offset and digital technology. As an industry veteran with his finger firmly placed on the pulse of market movements said, "The traditional offset market will shrink, but not as
The buzz everywhere around me is how fast and rapidly digital is making inroads into the traditional offset zones. Stories abound of printers venturing into publishing daily newspapers and magazines on digital machines, with some even value adding to their products by personalising copies.
Traditional offset, however is not to be left behind, as is evident from the new machines to be launched at Ipex this year. Heidelberg will unveil its CX 102 capable of printing 16,500 sheets per hour, while
Though it is becoming very commonplace to talk of 'corporate social responsibility and 'eco-friendly approaches, at media gatherings, the ground reality is that the printing fraternity is largely concerned with profit margins.
The need of the hour is mass