Twelve Indian publishers lead 54 publishers list

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WAN-IFRA has announced the winners of the International Color Quality Club 2018–2020 contest (ICQC). 67 publications, newspaper and magazines, produced by 54 publishing and printing companies in 20 countries have achieved membership in the ICQC for two years.

Once every two years since 1994, the World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers (WAN-IFRA) has offered newspapers worldwide an opportunity to demonstrate their color printing excellence by organizing a print-quality competition. In the 23rd edition, WAN-IFRA has opened the competition to the magazines as well because many publishing and printing companies are no longer printing only newspapers but magazines as well.

The competition has been organized by the World Printers Forum (WPF), the print community within WAN-IFRA. 121 publications from all over the world participated in this year’s competition. The qualified International Color Quality Club members are listed in the attached table in alphabetic order.

Club membership is offered to all companies who have successfully produced high-quality newspapers consistently over an extended time-period by following international printing standards.

The quality evaluation of submissions is composed of two parts – an evaluation based on objective measurements made on a print test element (WAN-IFRA ‘Cuboid’) that participants must print every day of a specified week per month for a period of three months; and a visual inspection of the general print quality by a jury of international newspaper experts. Participating companies must meet the defined quality criteria and should print without any common possible quality defects. This competition rewards those companies that not only print within approved international standards but also establish a fool-proof system for print production.

“By their successful participation in the competition, the companies have demonstrated that they can supply printing in outstanding quality and offer readers and advertisers high-quality products,” said Manfred Werfel, deputy chief executive officer, WAN-IFRA. “The Color Quality Club is more than a technical printing competition, as it offers participating companies the additional possibility to benchmark their printing quality against recognized international standards and improve it,” he adds.

A brochure presenting the successful participants and their publications will be available at this year’s IFRA World Publishing Expo from 9 to 11 October in Berlin, Germany. At IFRA World Publishing Expo, the new Club members will receive their certificates and new members of the Star Club of multiple winners will be honoured. Companies from South and East Asia will collect their certificates during WAN-IFRA India annual conference, 25 to 27 September, in Hyderabad, India.

The full list of members of the International Color Quality Club 2018-2020 can be found at the following link: http://wan-ifra.org/node/190941

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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