Lucky HuaGuang Graphics Co. Ltd. and Agfa Graphics have announced that they have entered into a strategic alliance in the graphics prepress business. The strategic alliance aims to allow both companies to grow their respective businesses by optimizing their respective strengths in manufacturing, technology and distribution of graphic prepress products and services.
Under the intended collaboration, Lucky HuaGuang Graphics will provide manufacturing capacity for printing plates in Nanyang, China, with Agfa Graphics’ support and using Agfa Graphics’ high-end technology and intellectual property to manufacture products for Agfa.
Furthermore, both companies plan to join forces to accelerate growth in mainland China, managed through the set-up of a joint venture combining their prepress distribution activities in the country.
Agfa and Lucky HuaGuang Graphics intend to expand their cooperation in other areas in the future, allowing both companies to grow their businesses and brand presence internationally.
“Joining forces with Lucky HuaGuang Graphics, a leading supplier of prepress plates in China, will offer us a unique opportunity to grow our business and to restore our profitability. It is an important step in the further development of our strategy to offer our customers more choice,” says Stefaan Vanhooren, president, Agfa Graphics.
“Agfa’s strong reputation and ambition to grow in the prepress industry will accelerate our plans to strengthen the presence of Lucky HuaGuang Graphics in the global printing industry,” says Tao Zhang, president of Lucky HuaGuang Graphics.
The parties have agreed not to disclose any financial details. The implementation of the transaction is subject to customary regulatory and other conditions.
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.