World Magazine Association joins IFRA and DCX Expo

James Hewes, CEO of FIPP

On 18 May 2018, the first global alliance was announced by FIPP representing global magazine media and the newspaper industry’s WAN-IFRA for cooperation in the forthcoming World Publishing Expo, and DCX, Digital Content Expo. Although, FIPP and WAN-IFRA have worked together in a contructive association in the past, the official alliance is a step towards working closely for benefit of their respective members while dealing with the challenges faced by print media industry.

Currently, newspaper and magazine media companies face a number of common challenges including the transformation of legacy media businesses to compete in a digital world. Many of the challenges and solutions are similar, from developing multi-platform strategies and new business models to devising innovative ways of storytelling and producing content. Cost-effective ways of distributing and sharing and dealing with powerful platforms like Google and Facebook present another day to day challenge.

WAN-IFRA will host IFRA world publishing expo and DCX digital content expo in Berlin from 11 October 2018. The expo will display a range of software programs via innovative technology and systems in print and digital media production of newspapers and magazines. The alliance between FIPP and WAN-IFRA will allow FIPP to participate in the expo and promote the event to its membership across the world. The partnership will address the challenges faced by newspaper and magazine industry by bringing the two closer and work to create innovative ways of dealing with them.

CEO of WAN-IFRA, Vincent Peyregne, commenting on the purpose of the alliance, said, “Newspaper and magazine publishers are faced with similar business and technological challenges for which they use the same solutions in the areas of software, hardware, materials and production and workflow systems. I am pleased that we cooperate with our friends from the World Magazine Association FIPP at the exhibitions for the first time. We need to join forces together to address collectively the future challenges of the publishing industry.”

James Hewes, CEO of FIPP expressed enthusiam for the collaboration and commented, “FIPP is delighted to be working with WAN-IFRA and Publishing Exhibition GmbH on the IFRA World Publishing Expo and DCX Digital Content Expo. This is the most exciting – but also most disruptive – time to be working in the publishing industry, making it more vital than ever that industry bodies work closely together to help our members take advantage of all the opportunities open to them. I’m sure this will only be the start of our collaboration and I look forward to working with our friends at WAN-IFRA on further projects in the near future.”

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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