AT Inks at Media Expo 2019, New Delhi

Inks for the signage, textile, ceramic, and graphic arts industry

Neerav Goswamy, director, AT Inks. Photo IPP
Neerav Goswamy, director, AT Inks. Photo IPP

AT Inks, a registered trademark and brand name of ink products sold by Rex-tone Industries, is one of the largest inkjet ink manufacturing companies in India. Headquartered in Mumbai with production and R&D facilities located in Vadodara and Gujarat, AT Inks manufactures several grades of solvent inks, eco-solvent inks, ceramic inks, UV curable inks, LED curable inks and water-based inks.

Incepted in 1994, the company celebrated its 25th year in the month of May in 2019. “We were the first ones to offer inkjet inks in the market when we started selling them in 2002. Prior to that, we used to manufacture dyes. We have a full range of inks from high-density substrates to stretchable substrates,” said Neerav Goswamy, director, AT Inks.

The company displayed its range of solvent-based inkjet inks for outdoor signage, eco-solvent inks for outdoor and indoor signage, dye sublimation water-based inks for the signage and textile industry, and UV lamp and LED curing inks during the recently held Media Expo in New Delhi.

The company also provides inks for hard and flexible substrate, which can be used in flatbed printing, hybrid, and roll-to-roll machines. “Since Media Expo is an important event for the signage industry, we are displaying a range of inks from our signage portfolio. We are among the largest players in the market for solvent-based inks and our primary focus is on UV, lamp and LED, and dye-sublimation inks. However, we see visitors showing a lot of interest in our UV inks since most of the machines displayed this year are UV printing machines. The trend seems to be favoring the UV curing segment and we see the potential for growth in it,” Goswamy explained.

The AT Inks stand received heavy footfall during the show. Talking about this, Goswamy said, “The footfall has been the best this year, and we have been participating at the show since 8 years. Since we are an ink manufacturing company, an exhibition like Media Expo is a brand-building exercise for us. The customers first buy the machines and then they buy the inks. This is a platform where we get to meet our existing as well as prospective customers. It enables us to receive feedback on our products. Some of our customers are using our inks since decades and when they come to our stand to vouch for the quality of our products, it instills a sense of pride and confidence in our team to provide for and help the industry better,” Goswamy said.

Speaking about the upcoming trends in the industry, he said, “One clear trend that we observed is that industry is moving towards UV machines. We saw solvent and eco-solvent machines in the last exhibition. But this year, most of the exhibitors showcased UV machines. The Indian market is starting to mature and the manufacturers are embracing the fact that they need to innovate in order to be competitive in the market,” Goswamy explained.

AT Inks saw a growth of 14% in FY18 -19. “The last year was not good for the industry, and we observed a dip in the market. But it looks like the industry will do better in the coming months; especially the months from September to February is the season for printing,” Goswamy shared.

The company plans to launch a new range of high-density UV inks, highly stretchable UV inks, thermoforming inks, and inks for Epson printheads in the next three months. For the textile industry, the company is working on a range of reactive inks that will be ready to be launched by the end of 2019. AT Inks will also participate in the upcoming Media Expo 2020 in Mumbai.

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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