Digital textile printing at Gartex 2019

Garment and textile machinery

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Gartex Texprocess, an exhibition for garment and textile machinery, fabric accessories and allied industries, was organized by MEX Exhibitions and Messe Frankfurt from 10 to 12 August 2019 at Pragati Maidan, Delhi. Spread across the halls 8, 9, 10, 11, 12 and 12 A, the event brought together approximately 200 Indian and international textile technology providers under one roof and was divided into various segments, such as digital textile printing, laundry show, denim show, embroidery show and fabric show.

Of all the focus segments, the digital textile printing segment saw significant footfall. More than 25% of the exhibitors at the event comprised digital textile printing machinery providers. Apart from creating new business opportunities, the event provided participants and visitors with strong networking opportunities. The manufacturers and providers were seen engrossed in conversations with old and new customers and their industry peers.

In particular, the direct-to-garment and fabric printing technology attracted significant attention with vibrant print demonstrations of machines by Kornit Digital, Apsom, Mimaki, Negi, Colorjet and Colorix on their respective Indian distributors’ stands. The die sublimation textile printing demonstrations by providers including HP, Epson, Atexo, Konica Minolta, Mouvent, MS, Reggiani, Mimaki, and Smartjet left passerbys spellbound.

The exhibitors such as Arrow, Negi and JN Arora reported that it wasn’t their first time participating at Gartex and the show is known to be a success every year. The show was just warming up on the first day but they were expecting serious inquiries by the second day. Additionally, the event proved to be a great platform to interact and catch up with the entire value chain.

Talking about the Indian digital textile printing sector, Vitesh K Sharma, country manager for HP India said, “The Indian textile industry contributes 2% to the country’s GDP and in that the penetration of digital textile printing is very small. The way the garments are being printed today is still very traditional. But we anticipate that in future, digital textile printing will definitely grow.”

Ashish Arora, marketing director, JN Arora said, “The digital textile printing will definitely grow and we are offering new products to the industry. These are interesting times for us; the customers are demanding both screen printing and digital printing technologies.”

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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– Naresh Khanna

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