IPAMA’s road map to the 14th biennial PRINTPACK INDIA

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Printpack india
Newly elected president of IPAMA Dayakar Reddy briefs the press about the 14th Biennial PRINTPACK Exhibition to take place in February 2019

At a meeting of its general body on 25 August 2017 at the Greater Noida India Exposition Centre, IPAMA elected its new president Dayakar Reddy, who later that afternoon briefed the industry and mainstream media about the next PrintPack India exhibition to be held from 1 to 6 February 2019 at the exposition site. Reddy said, “The Indian graphic arts industry has gained momentum post the 13th edition of the PRINTPACK INDIA exhibition earlier this year, with confirmed business of over US$ 290 million and trade inquiries of US$ 510 million.” He added that the entire industry seems to be accelerating with Indian exhibitions, with the 14th PrintPack show getting ready to scale up further and compete with global industry benchmark exhibitions of printing and packaging equipment and consumables. The next show aims to cover 65,000 square meters of the India Exposition Centre with exhibitor stands.

Speaking as the president of IPAMA, which represents the Printing, Packaging and Allied Machinery Manufacturers of India, Reddy said that the industry has huge growth potential, with a presentation that revealed the large and unfavorable gap in graphic arts equipment and consumables export and import figures. “Our focus is to give an ideal platform to the manufacturers so that they can perform better both domestically and in global markets,” he said.

2gigantic gap
According to IPAMA, Indian imports of printing and packaging equipment are five times the local industry’s export of equipment

IPAMA organizes the biennial PRINTPACK INDIA—a modern industrial exhibition site that has been growing in scale and in its modern amenities. It is extremely likely that the new Metro will also be commissioned in time for the 2019 exhibition. There is excellent road connectivity to Delhi/NCR with an 8-lane expressway that also extends to Agra and the Taj Mahal in 90 minutes from the expo center.

Naveen Gupta, the newly elected general secretary of IPAMA, added, “Right on track, IPAMA is working hard to bring the Indian graphic arts industry on the global map and there is no better platform in the entire world than PRINTPACK INDIA for this with the last edition of the show containing a record number of 430 companies and 86,000 business buyers. The 13th PRINTPACK INDIA, 2017 had participation from China, Dubai, Hong Kong, Italy, Saudi Arabia, Sharjah, South Korea, Taiwan, UK, USA, Indonesia, Philippines, Thailand and several other countries in addition to overwhelming domestic participation.”

According to IPAMA’s 2015-16 numbers, the market size of the Indian printing and packaging machinery industry is approximately Rs. 24,000 crore (US$ 3.8 billion) (Data 2015-16). Of this, imports are apparently five times those of local manufacture. Including consumables and the production of print and packaging, the figures are much higher with recent data indicating that India is currently the fastest growing packaging market in the world.

2023 promises an interesting ride for print in India

Indian Printer and Publisher founded in 1979 is the oldest B2B trade publication in the multi-platform and multi-channel IPPGroup. While the print and packaging industries have been resilient in the past 33 months since the pandemic lockdown of 25 March 2020, the commercial printing and newspaper industries have yet to recover their pre-Covid trajectory.

The fragmented commercial printing industry faces substantial challenges as does the newspaper industry. While digital short-run printing and the signage industry seem to be recovering a bit faster, ultimately their growth will also be moderated by the progress of the overall economy. On the other hand book printing exports are doing well but they too face several supply-chain and logistics challenges.

The price of publication papers including newsprint has been high in the past year while availability is diminished by several mills shutting down their publication paper and newsprint machines in the past four years. Indian paper mills are also exporting many types of paper and have raised prices for Indian printers. To some extent, this has helped in the recovery of the digital printing industry with its on-demand short-run and low-wastage paradigm.

Ultimately digital print and other digital channels will help print grow in a country where we are still far behind in our paper and print consumption and where digital is a leapfrog technology that will only increase the demand for print in the foreseeable future. For instance, there is no alternative to a rise in textbook consumption but this segment will only reach normality in the next financial year beginning on 1 April 2023.

Thus while the new normal is a moving target and many commercial printers look to diversification, we believe that our target audiences may shift and change. Like them, we will also have to adapt with agility to keep up with their business and technical information needs.

Our 2023 media kit is ready, and it is the right time to take stock and reconnect with your potential markets and customers. Print is the glue for the growth of liberal education, new industry, and an emerging economy. We seek your participation in what promises to be an interesting ride.

– Naresh Khanna

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