Interview – Sabine Geldermann, director – drupa 2024

Megatrends – digitalization and sustainability

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Sabine Geldermann, director – drupa 2024. Photo IPP
Sabine Geldermann, director – drupa 2024. Photo IPP

As the drupa 2024 traveling promotion team arrived in Delhi on 13 December 2023, Priyanka Tanwar took the opportunity to talk to drupa 2024 director Sabine Geldermann. Drupa 2024 takes place in Dusseldorf, Germany, from 28 May to 7 June.

Indian Printer & Publisher (IPP) – The drupa event is happening after a longer than usual gap of eight years. What innovations are you planning to bring to the show?

Sabine Geldermann – After nearly eight years, we are certainly looking forward to open our doors again from 28 May – 7 June 2024. We are very convinced that the upcoming edition will be another highly relevant and iconic event because everybody who is in the industry will have to understand where the industry is developing. Our challenges continue, but we are also surrounded by unbelievable opportunities. I think the upcoming drupa will reflect extensively the upcoming megatrends such as digitalization, sustainability, circular economy, connectivity, platform economy and their impact on our industry. It is worthwhile to join drupa in order to maintain and drive your competitive advantage.

IPP – Which are some of the top brands that will participate in drupa 2024?

Sabine Geldermann – We are currently having more than 1,300 exhibitors representing 50 nations. Among them are big exhibitor nations from Europe – Heidelberg, Koenig & Bauer, Kurz from Germany; big Japanese companies such as Canon, Fujifilm, Komori, Epson, Ricoh, Konica Minolta; and, Landa Digital Printing from Israel. Other big exhibitor nations are Italy, Spain, Switzerland, China, India and many more. Our biggest exhibitor is HP. 

IPP – How has the Indian presence improved at drupa? Who are some of the Indian exhibitors this time around?

Sabine Geldermann – India has developed very positively. If you compare with our 2016 edition as a reference, the number of exhibitors has risen from 42 to 74. We have doubled the size in terms of net space (4,618 square meters) and that’s terrific. Line-O-Matic, UFlex, Pelican, Rotoflex, The Printers House, Cosmo Films, Suba Solutions, Pratham Technologies, Autoprint Machinery Manufacturers, Impel Services and Sahil Graphics are some of the big names participating from India.

IPP – What are the goals of drupa 2024?

Sabine Geldermann – Our overall goal is to strengthen our industry. And in times that have been very challenging, if you speak in terms of Europe – geopolitical challenges as well as high energy prices, high paper prices, inflation and interest rates. We would like to highlight and show opportunities for the industry. 

We are very much driven by digital technologies that will shape the future, specifically inkjet, because with inkjet you can print on every single substrate that you can imagine, whether it is graphic arts papers and boards, plastic, glass, wood, ceramic, metal, aluminum, or textiles. So, there are a lot of opportunities for our customers to understand how they can diversify their portfolios as well. 

IPP – How do you see the megatrends shaping print ? 

Sabine Geldermann – I think ongoing digitalization will allow more automation and efficiency of every single player because at the end of the day, you really have to make sure to get more independent as well from human resources, being a source of failure. Digitalization will allow print businesses to analyze global data and big data in terms of machinery, customers, and many other aspects. It will even  support sustainability because by becoming more efficient in a process if you can reduce paper or any substrate in terms of waste, then you certainly will be able to produce much more sustainably.

IPP – Sustainability is currently the buzzword in the printing and packaging industry. What specific applications will be highlighted at drupa 2024?

Sabine Geldermann – We are going to see a lot of sustainable solutions and best cases at our dedicated Touchpoint Sustainability, which is organized by VDMA, our major association partner and the Association for Print and Paper Technology. They are going to present an outstanding dedicated forum providing visions from 2024 until 2040 and more. I think this Touchpoint is a must-attend to understand how you can reduce your carbon footprint, what new materials can support printers in terms of reducing energy and all aspects such as inks and paper alongside the entire value chain. So, there’s a lot to see and to discover.

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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