Bhalachandra Nikumb of Kodak India on the Covid-19 pandemic

Newspapers recovering, commercial slow and cartons moderate to good

Kodak India
Bhalachandra Nikumb, managing director, Kodak India

Indian Printer and Publisher asked Kodak India’s managing director, Bhalachandra Nikumb a few questions about the company’s challenges and views of the pandemic and its effect on the print industry.

Indian Printer and Publisher – How has Kodak fared during the pandemic in India in offset plates, inkjet and software?

Bhalachandra Nikumb – India went under nationwide lockdown beginning on 25 March 2020. Kodak India started operations from 1st April onwards to serve its newspaper and offset packaging customers that were classified under the category of essential services. Since April, we have seen our business growing gradually on a month over month basis. During Q4 we expect business to be in the range of 75-80% pre-Covid-19 level.

IPP In offset plates how is the consumption in a. newspapers; b. commercial and book presses; and, c. in the carton packaging industry?

Bhalachandra Nikumb – Newspaper [offset plate] consumption was badly affected initially because of lower circulation and pagination but now we can see the recovery due to the ongoing festival season. As far as the commercial and book presses, the overall consumption consumption in this category is very low and we expect recovery in the coming months. In the carton packaging industry the consumption in this category is moderate to good, and it is expected to continue to grow. Our Kodak Sonora Process Free Plates, continue to do well in this segment.

IPPWhat is the overall outlook for the year? Calendar or FY?

Bhalachandra Nikumb – Because of the prolonged lockdown, Kodak’s 2020 business was badly affected versus 2019. We are optimistic on the revival of the business for 2021. n

In 2024, we are looking at full recovery and growth-led investment in Indian printing

Indian Printer and Publisher founded in 1979 is the oldest B2B trade publication in the multi-platform and multi-channel IPPGroup. It created the category of privately owned B2B print magazines in the country. And by its diversification in packaging, (Packaging South Asia), food processing and packaging (IndiFoodBev) and health and medical supply chain and packaging (HealthTekPak), and its community activities in training, research, and conferences (Ipp Services, Training and Research) the organization continues to create platforms that demonstrate the need for quality information, data, technology insights and events.

India is a large and tough terrain and while its book publishing and commercial printing industry have recovered and are increasingly embracing digital print, the Indian newspaper industry continues to recover its credibility and circulation. The signage industry is also recovering and new technologies and audiences such as digital 3D additive printing, digital textiles, and industrial printing are coming onto our pages. Diversification is a fact of life for our readers and like them, we will also have to adapt with agility to keep up with their business and technical information needs.

India is one of the fastest growing economies in nominal and real terms – in a region poised for the highest change in year to year expenditure in printing equipment and consumables. Our 2024 media kit is ready, and it is the right time to take stock – to emphasize your visibility and relevance to your customers and turn potential markets into conversations.

– Naresh Khanna

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