Drupa 2020 – now it’s just 201 days away

Embrace the future


Embracing the future of printing

Digital and packaging printing will be the main focus of the next drupa, which will take place from 16 to 20 June 2020, less than a month after interpack the same year. From today, 17 November 2019, drupa 2020 is just 201 days away. Some of the prototype 40-inch digital inkjet presses shown at drupa 2016 are now at beta customers who produce monocartons and these should be ready for sale in June 2020. The other new information is that digital textile printing will feature at drupa 2020. 

Drupa’s global roadshows have begun, and in India, there will be ‘embrace the future’ events on 25 November 2019 in Chennai; in Mumbai on 26 November 2019; and in Delhi, on 28 December 2019. Limited seats are available, and entries are by registration only. Please contact the Messe Dusseldorf India office in each of these cities.

Embrace the future of packaging

Digital and packaging printing will be the main focus of the next drupa, which will take place from 16 to 20 June 2020, less than a month after interpack the same year. The packaging thrust at the event will be enhanced by the participation of the Active and Intelligent Packaging Industry Association. AIPIA members include major brand owners such as Nestle, Danone, and suppliers such as Agfa, Heidelberg, and Seigewerke. Initially, AIPIA has been given exhibition space at the ‘Touchpoint Packaging platform.’ The AIPIA is also actively supporting the Second Packaging Design, Innovation, and Technology Conference on 13 December 2019 at Pragati Maidan in New Delhi. IppStar and Messe Düsseldorf India are jointly organizing the PDIT2 Conference. 

At a press conference at interpack in 2017, Messe Düsseldorf’s senior management acknowledged several overlaps between the two megashows. But it also insisted it is in continuous consultation with major exhibitors to come up with a differentiated focus for each show. ‘Parallels’ and ‘synergies’ were the words used by Messe Düsseldorf president and chief executive officer, Werner Dornscheidt. Synergy would be particularly applicable for packaging printing and converting as the major drupa highlight. The next interpack, which is from 7 to 13 May 2020, is therefore expected to focus even more on processing as it did already in 2017.


Messe Dusseldorf in 2012 from the air. The Espirit Arena is in the foreground. Photo PSA

drupa 2020 is structured with six product groups – prepress and print; pre- and cross-media; post-press, converting and packaging; future technologies; materials; and equipment, services, and infrastructure. Highlighted topics include packaging production, functional printing, industrial printing, and 3D. ‘Touchpoint Packaging,’ launched at drupa 2016 in collaboration with the European Packaging Design Association (EPDA), will again be organized as a platform covering the entire packaging production chain. 

Interaction between brand owners, designers, and material and equipment manufacturers is to turn this forum into a place of inspiration where solutions to future requirements will be proposed and debated. The Touchpoint concept, therefore, fits seamlessly into the ‘embrace the future’ slogan that is to be drupa 2020’s essential claim.

Markus Heering, managing director, Print and Paper Technology at the German equipment manufacturers’ association VDMA, co-organizer of drupa presented forecasts on the future of packaging printing at the 2017 press event. According to the projections shown, the global value of packaging printing was forecast to grow by 15% in the five years between 2015 and 2020. The highest increase projected at 79% for India, which would bring India into the top five packaging print producers by 2020.

Dynamic leitmotiv – inclusion, convergence, transformation

At the press conference, Sabine Geldermann, drupa director and Messe Düsseldorf’s global head – print technologies, also presented the new visual leitmotiv for the 2020 show. The series of faces of people from all corners of the planet blurs into butterfly wings, signifying, as Geldermann explained, beauty, aesthetic appeal, creativity, and depth. 

“The delicate butterfly wings symbolize departure, change, a transformation process that affects all industries, but particularly the traditional print industry, every company, everybody. Transformation moves companies to rethink their strategies, adapt to new processes, and move into new business models—a change that also takes place in people’s minds. Different individuals have already moved into the focus of the new marketing campaign. The heads are surrounded by color digits that symbolize the wide variety of print applications. With the slogan ‘embrace the future,’ drupa invites exhibitors and visitors to experience and accept technological innovation, trends, and future challenges. And, to implement them into their corporate workflows and tap into new potential.”  

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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