Komori acquires majority stake in Insight’s offset press sales operation

Komori acquires majority stake in Insight’s offset press sales operation
Yosuke Hayakawa of Komori and Ajay Aggarwal of Insight sign off on Komori's acquisition of a majority stake in the offset press sales operations of the Insight group at Delhi on 16 February 2018

On 16 February 2018, Komori announced direct participation in sales and servicing of its offset presses in India by acquiring a majority stake in the offset sales operations of its distributor in the country, Insight Communications. The agreement’s implementation will take full effect and ‘get into full speed by 1 April 2018,’ according to a joint statement by the two organizations.

Komori is, of course, a leading manufacturer and supplier of sheet-fed offset, web offset, high-end packaging and security printing presses. Its overseas sales in the fiscal year ended 31 March 2017 accounted for 60.3% of consolidated net sales. Out of all its overseas markets, Komori gives a lot of attention to China, India and ASEAN countries due their robust economies. According to the statement, print demand is expected to grow rapidly in these regions due to booming population growth and burgeoning personal consumption. Keeping these factors in mind, Komori has positioned these countries as priority countries in its growth plans.

Since 2007, Insight has been an aggressive distributor of Komori products and has achieved significant success in terms of the number of presses installed and a leading position in the Indian market in the last three years. With strong relationships in the print industry built by representation of multiple products from global leaders, its marketing and sales has shown a great capacity for reaching across big print clusters and smaller cities and towns. In just ten years it has literally created a new market segment of printers who aspired to purchasing new presses but were hitherto unable to and established a strong footprint of 260 offset press installations. At the same time, it has developed an engineering and support service network.

The joint statement speaks of India’s impressive demographics—a population of 1.3 billion, half of whom are 24 years of age or younger. “The country clearly holds abundant potential for economic growth. Likewise, the market for offset printing presses is expected to grow at a much higher rate, exceeding the country’s GDP growth rate,” it says.

“To seize these opportunities, Komori decided to acquire majority stake in Insight Communications and Print Solution India Pvt. Ltd. and make it a subsidiary. The aim is to penetrate the Indian market even deeper. Not only does this move aim to boost sales of Komori offset printing presses, the acquisition of these shares is expected to help Komori and Insight engage in closer collaboration.”

Satoshi Mochida, president and chief operating officer, Komori Japan says, “We believe that these initiatives will help local printing companies better utilize high-value-added printing solutions and enhance the efficiency of their operations, thereby contributing to the development of India’s printing industry.” According to Sangam Khanna of Insight Communications, “It [the new structure] will result in Komori getting closer to the Indian customers and provide much better service, enhance product reliability and provide information and communications technology (ICT) solutions aimed at improving productivity. Future plans include creating various products tailored to meet local Indian requirements.”

Ajay Aggarwal of Insight says, “The new organization plans to adopt the best of both the local and global as the current team will continue to handle operations in India with enhanced support, investments and growth engines coming from Komori’s global presence.” Speaking with us on the phone, Aggarwal adds, “Komori will be operating out of our [Insight’s] new premises in Delhi/NCR and the two companies will continue to work closely on sales and servicing. Also, we will handle the western and southern India markets while Komori will more directly look after the northern and eastern India territories.”

Hirofumi Hoshino will be taking over as the managing director of the new venture. He joined Komori in 1977, after getting his degree in mechanical engineering, and was involved in press design and production. A core member of Komori’s Global Sales and Service Group and an associate board director, he has spent time working for Komori America as well as Komori Europe. Sangam Khanna will head the sales and marketing function in the restructured Komori majority owned sales and servicing organization.

The Covid-19 pandemic led to the country-wide lockdown on 25 March 2020. It will be two years tomorrow as I write this. What have we learned in this time? Maybe the meaning of resilience since small companies like us have had to rely on our resources and the forbearance of our employees as we have struggled to produce our trade platforms.

The print and packaging industries have been fortunate, although the commercial printing industry is still to recover. We have learned more about the digital transformation that affects commercial printing and packaging. Ultimately digital 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.

Web analytics show that we now have readership in North America and Europe amongst the 90 countries where our five platforms reach. Our traffic which more than doubled in 2020, has at times gone up by another 50% in 2021. And advertising which had fallen to pieces in 2020 and 2021, has started its return since January 2022.

As the economy approaches real growth with unevenness and shortages a given, we are looking forward to the PrintPack India exhibition in Greater Noida. We are again appointed to produce the Show Daily on all five days of the show from 26 to 30 May 2022.

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