Print price and margins are under pressure globally – not just in India!

4th drupa Global Trends report 2017

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Messe Dusseldorf’s 4th ‘drupa Global Trends’ report is available now. The survey is based on talks with nearly 1200 participants who visited drupa in May of 2016 although they were interviewed later. It is claimed that the survey represents a good cross-section from all the main market sectors and regions – 839 printers participated, with 525 from Europe and 314 from the rest of the world. The 331 responding suppliers included 220 from Europe with the rest from all the other regions. Printfuture (UK) and Wissler & Partner (Switzerland) assisted Messe Düsseldorf in conducting and authoring the report. Published below are excerpts from the executive summary. All graphics are a copyright of Messe Düsseldorf/C Tillmann. 

Optimism conquers reality 

In global terms, 42% of printers described their business as in a ‘good’ economic state, while 11% described it as ‘poor.’ As always the forecast for next year is somewhat more optimistic than the reality the following year while in some cases the difference is striking, such as Africa, which reported a net decline in confidence, the first time for any region since this report series started in 2013. 

Print price and margins fall everywhere except in South and Central America

Printers globally report continuing falls in prices, which are compensated for by increasing utilization and hence raising overall revenues at a cost of falling margins. South/Central America and Africa reported net positive price increases whilst the Middle East reported severe price and margin falls. Similarly, while publishing printers in North America show falls in revenues, prices and utilization, in South/Central America and Africa rises were reported in all three measures.

Digital cut sheet volumes up 25% – webfed digital up 11% – sheetfed offset and flexo up 8%

Fourteen out of sixteen technologies listed scored a 10% or above penetration in at least one of the market sectors. Overall digital toner cutsheet color presses led by a wide margin in terms of the positive net balance of print volumes in 2016 at +25% followed by digital inkjet rollfed color at +11%. The picture is more complex when you drill down into the market sectors, where for example there is 8% growth overall in sheetfed offset thanks largely to packaging and publishing markets and an 8% growth overall in flexo due to packaging and functional markets.

In 2024, we are looking at full recovery and growth-led investment in Indian printing

Indian Printer and Publisher founded in 1979 is the oldest B2B trade publication in the multi-platform and multi-channel IPPGroup. It created the category of privately owned B2B print magazines in the country. And by its diversification in packaging, (Packaging South Asia), food processing and packaging (IndiFoodBev) and health and medical supply chain and packaging (HealthTekPak), and its community activities in training, research, and conferences (Ipp Services, Training and Research) the organization continues to create platforms that demonstrate the need for quality information, data, technology insights and events.

India is a large and tough terrain and while its book publishing and commercial printing industry have recovered and are increasingly embracing digital print, the Indian newspaper industry continues to recover its credibility and circulation. The signage industry is also recovering and new technologies and audiences such as digital 3D additive printing, digital textiles, and industrial printing are coming onto our pages. Diversification is a fact of life for our readers and like them, we will also have to adapt with agility to keep up with their business and technical information needs.

India is one of the fastest growing economies in nominal and real terms – in a region poised for the highest change in year to year expenditure in printing equipment and consumables. Our 2024 media kit is ready, and it is the right time to take stock – to emphasize your visibility and relevance to your customers and turn potential markets into conversations.

– Naresh Khanna

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Naresh Khanna
Editor of Indian Printer and Publisher since 1979 and Packaging South Asia since 2007. Trained as an offset printer and IBM 360 computer programmer. Active in the movement to implement Indian scripts for computer-aided typesetting. Worked as a consultant and trainer to the Indian print and newspaper industry. Visiting faculty of IDC at IIT Powai in the 1990s. Also founder of IPP Services, Training and Research and has worked as its principal industry researcher since 1999. Author of book: Miracle of Indian Democracy.

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