Colorjet launches Earth series at ITME 2022

Bags best printing engineering company award

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Colorjet
Smarth Bansal (L), GM, brand/product management at Colorjet at the company's stand at ITME 2022. Photo IPP

ColorJet, arguably India’s largest manufacturer of textile printing machines with exports to 38 countries across the world, launched its Earth series machine at the ITME exhibition held at the India Expo Centre in Greater Noida from 8 – 13 December 2022. 

The Earth series from ColorJet – which was also awarded the best printing engineering company at the event – is a pigment-based machine that doesn’t need any pre coating or steaming or washing. Colorjet manufactures 8-color and 4-color textile printing machines that can make a multitude of colors – which can be matched with the Pantone code or the RGB code.

Colorjet
The Earth series from ColorJet. Photo IPP

“It is a solution that will help you to save approximately 98% water and it runs on all natural and cotton-based fibers. The fabric goes into a roll form and we can print digitally on it. After polymerization at 160 degrees, it is ready to use with a decent wash fastness,” Smarth Bansal, GM, brand/product management at Colorjet, said.

“We launched the machine and saw a lot of traction. We had visitors from Vardhman, Trident and many big companies from across India, and a lot of foreign visitors as well,” Bansal said.

The company exhibited three other machines – the Metro NXT, which is a 1.8 meter direct-to-fabric printer; the SublyXpress Plus, a 1.95 meter industrial sublimation printer; and the bestselling VastraJet, which is a 1.8 meter direct-to-fabric printer. 

Colorjet
Installations at the Colorjet stall at ITME 2022. Photo IPP

The Metro NXT is a reactive machine with 32 industrial grade Kyocera print heads, which can deliver sharp quality output of 5,000-6,000 square meters a day. The SublyXpress Plus prints on paper, which is then transferred onto polyester.

The VastraJet direct is the most successful Colorjet model in India with more than 400 machines running in the subcontinent. It works on pigment reactive, disperse and acid inks, which can print on all kinds of fabrics whether natural, polyester based or blends.

“The machines that we make are very efficiently built to make sure that the water, energy and time are reduced. If other machines use 100 liters of water, we use 20 liters of water in the same green technologies because of the recirculation system that filters the water,” explains Bansal.

Satnam Textile, GK Textiles, Mulberry Silks from Mangalore, and Guru Prasad from Ludhiana are some of Colorjet’s main clients. The company has customers in Varanasi, Surat, Ludhiana, Amritsar, Tirupur, Bangalore and other parts of India. Overseas, it has customers in Brazil, Germany, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Indonesia, Vietnam, and Pakistan. One of its customers in Germany is Shirty, a print-on-demand solution that employs VastraJet on pigment inks.

Bansal said that the textile printing market, which is only 4-5% today, has the scope to reach 25%. “This means a huge demand for textile printing machines. Look at the government movement in PM Mitra (mega integrated textile region and apparel) parks. They are creating 1,000 acre textile townships, which will have the whole process – from spinning to weaving to printing to buying to garmenting – at one place. Keeping in mind sustainability, they have to move on to digital printing. In digital, you don’t need to create 10,000 meters in one time; you can create 100 designs of 100 meters each. That’s the beauty of digital printing.”

“In textile printing, sublimation is already matured. People are now moving towards reactive printing on cotton and pigment printing, because pigment printing doesn’t need steaming and washing. Also, no pre-treatment is required. I see that direct dispersion will be increasing because with direct dispersion on applications such as swimwear you don’t need to transfer. With transfer, there is not too much penetration of the fabric, whereas with direct disperse the penetration is good and when you stretch the fabric you don’t see the white lines,” he concludes.

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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