drupa Press Releases

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May 2018

Press Contact:

Anne Meerboth-Maltz
Tel. (312)781-5185
Fax (312) 781-5188
E-mail: ameerboth@mdna.com

Messe Düsseldorf North America
150 North Michigan Avenue
Suite 2920
Chicago, IL 60601


After initial challenges regarding print quality and substrates as well as rapid developments, inkjet is now viewed as a mature and stable process, capable of producing high quality images on a range of different substrates. Therefore, the drupa Spotlight survey and report 2018 focuses on the impact of inkjet printing. This survey supplements the drupa Global Trends Reports.

While the 300 participants in the global detailed study (203 printers and 99 suppliers) are generally enthusiastic about the possibilities of the inkjet, they are by no means "naive": they know the limitations of this technology and in many cases test how they could best exploit its advantages for themselves. It is noticeable that the detailed results of the drupa Spotlight survey show almost no regional fluctuations. Generally, there is also a great deal of agreement between printers and suppliers.

Important is the growing confidence of printers to be able to use inkjet in several market segments. This offers them the opportunity to develop new markets that are not part of their traditional core sector. Although Spotlight participants report strong growth in all sectors, the more specialized the market is, the higher the growth rate.

For many the cost of inks remains the core issue restraining growth. However, when an inkjet application fits a specialist market, there is potential for impressive growth. “If you want to offer inkjet, you have to understand the workflow. The focus is on applications in which good processes are defined - these are constantly increasing,” pointed out a supplier from Great Britain (packaging and commercial sectors).

It is obvious that some formats are better suited for certain markets. While roll-fed was the favorite in most markets, B2 sheetfed printing is also a popular choice in many markets. Nevertheless, B2 inkjets are selling less worldwide than those with liquid toner, which came onto the market at about the same time.

It is important to put the development of inkjet by suppliers in perspective. 46% of suppliers reported that inkjet represented less than 10% of total turnover as yet. Clearly some specialize in inkjet, while others only offer inkjet as a further option, for example in addition to digital toner printing and conventional offset/ flexo printing. However, almost all suppliers are already investing heavily in this technology - with high expenditure on research and development. For those printers investing in inkjet, the dominant consideration when choosing a supplier is the level of service support followed by the price of the complete commercial package.

Sabine Geldermann, Director drupa at Messe Düsseldorf, stated: “The key question for anyone considering the purchase of inkjet print technology is that it needs to be the right fit for the desired applications. Market-changing process improvements can only be achieved when the technology provides the desired running cost, productivity levels, print requirements, size, substrate suitability, and workflow automation tools. New advanced inkjet systems have brought the disruptive capability of inkjet to a new level. Higher quality inkjet for both cutsheet and roll-fed has arrived and is bringing digital print to a broader range of applications across all market sectors.”

These two quotes from drupa Spotlight survey participants literally represent the potential of inkjet:
“It's the Future”, supplier from Spain (packaging sector)
“Futuro”, printer from, Colombia, (publishing sector)

The complete Spotlight report on inkjet will be published at the end of May (in English) and can be purchased online at www.drupa.com.

For information about drupa 2020, contact Messe Düsseldorf North America, contact Messe Düsseldorf North America, 150 North Michigan Avenue, Suite 2920, Chicago, IL 60601. Telephone: (312) 781-5180; Fax: (312) 781-5188; E-mail: info@mdna.com; Visit www.drupa.com and http://www.mdna.com

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Messe Dusseldorf North America Located at 150 N. Michigan Avenue, Suite 2920, Chicago, IL. Phone: 312-781-5180. .