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The Top International Ink Companies



In light of the major changes in the printing ink industry in recent years, 2006 was a time of relative stability as ink manufacturers continued to increase their efforts into growing markets and regions.



By Staff



Published August 7, 2007
Related Searches: offset inkjet solvent-based metallic
The International Rankings

(Ink and Graphic Arts Sales)



1. Dainippon Ink & Chemicals/Sun Chemical $5.01B
2. Flint Group $3.32B
3. Siegwerk Group $1.15B
4. Toyo Ink $1.13B
5. Huber Group
$940M
6. Sakata INX
$927M
7. Tokyo Printing Ink
$468M
8. SICPA $400M
9. Inctec Inc. $367M
10. Fujifilm Sericol International $275M
11. T&K Toka
$245M
12. Dainichiseika Color & Chemicals $240M
13. Royal Dutch Printing Ink Van Son $150M
14. Wikoff Color $133M
15. Epple Druckfarben $93M
15. Sanchez S.A. de C.V. $93M
17. Zeller+Gmelin $82M
18. Rieger Inks $55M
19. Ruco Druckfarben $44M
20. Chimigraf Iberica
$42M
21. Encres Dubuit $34M
22. Brancher Company $31M
23. Cromos S.A. Tintas Graficas      $29M


Dainippon Ink & Chemicals, Inc. (Including Sun Chemical Corporation)


7-20 Nihonbashi 3-chome
Chuo-ku, Tokyo 103-8233
Japan
Phone: +81 3-3272-4511
Fax: +81 3-3278-8558
Internet: DIC: www.dic.co.jp;
Sun Chemical: www.sunchemical.com
Sales: DIC: $5.01 billion (590.247 billion yen) in graphic arts, including Sun Chemical, which is approaching $3.5 billion in sales. Total sales: $8.61 billion (1,015.664 billion yen).



Major Products: Broad product portfolio with capabilities in web heatset and sheetfed offset;
publication and packaging gravure; news ink and publication coldset; flexographic packaging inks;corrugated packaging inks; energy curable inks and coatings; screen inks, toner, inkjet materials, adhesives for packaging, overprint varnishes, specialty coatings, effect inks, security inks and coatings, printing consumables and organic pigments for inks, plastics, paints, coatings and cosmetics.

Key Personnel: Koji Oe, president; Kazuo Sugie, executive vice president; Shunji Ehara, managing director; Toshihiro Sugai, director, president of graphic arts materials business operation; Hideo Ishii, general manager of graphic arts materials technical administrative department.

Number of Employees: 25,413 worldwide.

Comments: Overall, Dainippon Ink & Chemicals, Inc. (DIC) had a good year in 2006. Overall, DIC’ssales increased 1.1 percent, with graphic arts sales rising 7.4 percent. Reflecting stronger global

Koji Oe
economic conditions, overall sales of mainstay printing inks were solid. New product introductions for publication and packaging created additional demands. Publication and commercial printing continue to show a decline year over year. Trends in new media are likely to have a negative effect on mass media like newspapers, magazines and books, which could mean a continued decline for sheetfed and publication printers.
  
In Japan, sales of organic pigments, especially exports, remained brisk. Sales of epoxy resins were also brisk, particularly for use in printed circuit boards and encapsulating materials. In the area of synthetic resins for coatings, sales of environment-friendly products rose sharply.
   
DIC’s best growth was in Asia and Oceania, where sales rose 12 percent, bolstered by offset inks for high-end packaging applications in China and gravure and news inks in India.
   
In the Americas and Europe, graphic arts sales rose 9.4 percent in 2006. In North America and Europe, Sun Chemical’s sales experienced modest growth in the packaging segment, particularly in flexible packaging and rigid plastic packaging. Print-on-demand continues to gain market share and increasingly is displacing conventional screen and offset printing. Toner-based printing is becoming increasingly competitive with offset for targeted marketing. Meanwhile, inkjet printing continues to grow rapidly in the large-format segment.
   
Growing demand in Central and Eastern Europe and in Latin America resulted in increased shipments of ink in 2006.
   
DIC took steps to adjust product prices in response to continuously rising raw material prices. In addition, DIC will strive to reduce costs by promoting the closure and integration of production facilities and revolutionizing production processes. It was necessary for DIC to implement price increases for publication, packaging and news inks in Europe and North America, which partially offset the significant increases in raw material costs, which the company experienced over the past year and is still experiencing today.
   
While 2006 was relatively quiet in terms of recent acquisitions, DIC did acquire Envoy Communications Group Inc.’s UK subsidiaries ECG Holdings (UK) Limited, Watt Gilchrist Limited and Parker Williams Design Limited.
   
Watt Gilchrist, headquartered in Leeds, UK, is one of the leading graphic arts companies in the UK, while London-based Parker Williams is one the leading packaging design and brand development firms in the UK. The acquisition will enable the company to better serve its customers in the areas of packaging development and color management and will also create new opportunities for Watt Gilchrist and Parker Williams. The acquisition includes the ODIN packaging and digital asset management system.
   
DIC is committed to developing and offering products that respond to evolving user needs and marketchanges. DIC will endeavor to boost sales by focusing its efforts on high-performance products and environmentally-friendly products, which contribute to enhanced productivity for customers. DIC plans to increase investment, primarily in conservation, an area in which the company has limited investment to date. In the high-growth Southeast Asian and Eastern European markets, DIC will concentrate on amending its sales network and expanding sales.
   
In terms of R&D, DIC is focusing its development efforts on environment-friendly products, most notably, introducing Web World New ADVAN Premier, its environmentally-friendly heatset web offset process ink. DIC also developed an ink for use with the reverse printing method, which is suited to mass production of color filters. In line with the principle of sustainable development, DIC is promoting the development of technologies and products that are friendly to the environment.
   
Going forward, DIC will emphasize leveraging its chemical technology and global presence to maximize its expertise in color engineering and high-performance products, thus allowing DIC to increase corporate value while coexisting with the community, contributing to society and earning the trust of shareholders; a vision which DIC has encapsulated in the phrase “Color and Comfort by Chemistry.”



Flint Group


North American Administrative Offices
14909 Beck Road
Plymouth, MI 48170-7194
USA
Phone: +1 734-781-4600
Fax: +1 734-781-4699
Internet: www.flintgrp.com
E-mail: info@flintgrp.com
Sales: Revenues in 2006 (Including Day International) were $3.32 billion (€2.55 billion).



Major Products: Cold and heatset web offset, sheetfed offset, flexographic, gravure, UV/EB inks and
coatings for publication, news, package and commercial applications. A wide range of inks for narrow web tag and label applications. Photopolymer plates for flexographic, gravure and letterpress applications. Offset printing blankets and sleeves, pressroom chemicals, flexographic sleeves systems and diecutting supplies. Dry, flushed and presscake pigments, aqueous dispersions varnishes and additives for the colorant market.

Key Personnel: Howard Poulson, non-executive chairman; Leonard D. (Dave) Frescoln, CEO; Michael J. Gannon, president and COO; Michael J. Bissell, executive VP and CFO; Dr. Dirk Aulbert, president, Flint Group Europe; Bill Miller, president, Flint Group North America; Damian Johnson, president, Flint Group India/ Pacific; Jerko E. Rendic, president, Flint Group Latin America; Henry Leong, president, Flint Group Asia; Russell Joyce, president, XSYS Print Solutions (narrow web inks); Dr. Thomas Telser, president, Flint Group Printing Plates; Denny Wolters, CEO, Day International; Craig Foster, president, Flint Group Pigments; Rita A. Conrad, VP, corporate communications; Ron S. Muawad, VP, corporate controller.

Number of Employees: Approximately 8,300 worldwide.

Comments: 2006 was an excellent year for Flint Group. Overall, Flint Group enjoyed improved earnings in 2006, and the company anticipates similar growth in 2007. Raw material prices continued to spiral upward, finally showing some stabilization toward the end of the year, and the company announced a series of price increases across the board. Flint Group opened its second manufacturing center in China, this time a fluid ink plant in Guangzhou, while Jetrion, LLC, a digital ink and equipment company launched in 2003, was sold to EFI.
   
Higher raw material prices and operational costs continue to impact the ink industry, leading Flint Group to announce price increases on virtually all of its products in North America and Europe throughout the past year.
    
“For the first time in a very long time, we were successful in implementing price increases, althoughthey did little to offset the raw materials increases,” said Dave Frescoln, Flint Group’s CEO.

Dave Frescoln

   
The acquisition of Flint Ink by XSYS Print Solutions and subsequent merger into Flint Group has resulted in the new company being either the number one or number two supplier in every region it serves.
  
Now that the integration of the Flint Group is nearly complete, the new group is in a position to take full advantage of the synergies, such as global capabilities and local service, best practice implementation and consolidated procurement.
   
“The majority of integration activities following the union of XSYS Print Solutions and Flint Ink have been completed, and attention is focusing on building our business in each of the regions and product areas we serve,” Mr. Frescoln said. “The consolidation has allowed us to streamline operations and product lines while increasing the overall portfolio of products we can deliver to our customers. The additional size and global structure are also of benefit at a time when the industry is both fragmented and undergoing globalization, and customers themselves are becoming more global.”
   
Flint Group recorded strong growth in China, while Latin America also showed increasing strength. The completion of the Guangzhou facility was the primary capital project. The 4,800-square-meter plant, in operation since May 2006, provides packaging and commercial printers with water- and solvent-based inks, UV inks, specialty inks and varnishes. The Guangzhou facility primarily serves China and Southeast Asian markets. With the new facility in place, Flint Group looks forward to reaping the benefits of local service to the growing Chinese packaging market.
   
In another major capital project, Flint Group Printing Plates put its new production plant for flexographic plates into operation in Willstätt, Germany. Printing inks for packaging applications are also produced at the new facility.
   
Flint Group is the leading supplier of heatset and publication gravure inks in Europe, and is to more than double its capacity for producing heatset printing inks at its Frankfurt production site. The expansion to 55,000 metric tons per year is scheduled for completion in the next few weeks. At the same, the company is investing in its Frankfurt production facilities for publication gravure inks. Amounting to some €10 million, this investment is a sustainable contribution to development of the site.
   
Over the past two years, Flint Group has consolidated its production of heatset inks into three locations in Europe: Frankfurt (Germany), s-Gravenzande (Netherlands) and Slinfold (United Kingdom).
   
Now, with greater plant capacity and cutting-edge production processes, Flint Group will be able to respond even more swiftly and with greater flexibility to the challenges of the heatset market.
   
“Frankfurt is the hub from which we serve the Central and Eastern European web offset market. This capacity expansion is a forward-looking investment for Frankfurt which underscores our commitment to the market in Europe,” said Wolfgang Blumschein, vice president and general manager of Flint Group Europe, Publication Printing Division. “By expanding our capacity, we aim to consolidate our position as a reliable, leading manufacturer of heatset inks, whether they are delivered in barrels, containers or by tanker transport. In all these measures, we set great store by being able to serve our customers with the utmost flexibility at short notice.”
   
In recent news, Flint Group acquired Day International, a world leader in manufacturing and distributing printing blankets, sleeves, pressroom chemicals and printing supplies, on May 31, 2007.
   
The Day product portfolio is a strong complement to the existing Flint Group product line, and substantially increases Flint Group’s global position in the non-ink pressroom consumables market. Day International will operate as a business unit of Flint Group, and Dennis Wolters, CEO of Day International, will remain in that role within the new organization.
   
“By combining the complementary product lines of the two companies, we are creating a stronger supplier with a significantly broader range of products for our customers around the world,” said Mr. Frescoln. “In addition, Day’s image transfer technologies provide a strong avenue to market for all of our products in both conventional and digital printing.”
 
“Combining Day International’s range of products with those of Flint Group creates an exceptionally strong portfolio to support printers around the globe,” said Mr. Wolters. “The expanded organization will be in a strong competitive position in the best sense, allowing customers to meet most of their pressroom needs from a single, trusted resource.”
   
In an important move, Flint Group sold Jetrion, LLC, the company’s inkjet ink and printing system subsidiary, to Electronics for Imaging (EFI) for $40 million.
   
Mr. Frescoln noted that printers appear to be enjoying improved conditions.
   
“In general, results were up throughout 2006, an encouraging sign after the last three or four years,” Mr. Frescoln said. “We are hopeful it will continue through 2007 and beyond. We have noticed some changes in inventory patterns with our customers which in turn affect us. With the recent price increases, there may have been a tendency to store extra inventory as a hedge, but that can be a costly proposition as well. What we may be seeing now is a leveling out of inventories in the face of what appears to be some pricing stability.”
   
Mr. Frescoln believes that 2007 will be a strong year for the Flint Group, although raw material shortages are a serious concern.
   
“We believe 2007 will continue the upward movement begun in 2006, and results will align with general economic conditions,” Mr. Frescoln said. “Raw materials issues, driven by globalization, will continue to be a focus. We are keeping a keen eye out for potential shortages and working proactively to develop alternate materials to forestall the effects of such shortages.”



Siegwerk Group International


Alfred-Keller-Strasse 55
53721 Siegburg
Germany
Phone: +49 2241-3040
Fax: +49 2241-304777
Internet: www.siegwerk.com
E-mail: uk@siegwerk.de
Sales: $1.15 billion (€870 million).



Major Products: Provider of solvent-based, water-based, energy curable and specialty liquid inks and
coatings and related point-of-use services for the packaging and label industries. Product applications include flexible packaging, narrow web labels, tobacco and folding carton using flexographic, rotogravure and offset printing.

Key Personnel: Herbert Forker, CEO; Oliver Wittmann, CFO; Ralf Hildenbrand, president, flexible packaging; Dr. Ansgar Nonn, president, publication and supply chain management Hugo Noordhoek Hegt, president, PPL (plastic, paper, label) packaging; Dan McDowell, vice president NAFTA region; Christian Vang, vice president Asia/Pacific region; Juan Carlos Salaberry, vice president South America region; Gilles Catherin, vice president strategic product innovation; Klaus Heger, vice president technology flexible packaging; Thomas Bastian, marketing director, flexibles packaging; Gilles Faure, marketing director, PPL packaging.

Number of Employees: 4,000 in 37 countries.

Comments: Siegwerk had a tremendous year in 2006, as the “new Siegwerk” remains on the road to

Herbert Forker
success. Siegwerk has grown into one of the three biggest producers of printing inks worldwide, as 34 national subsidiaries on all five continents represent the company prominently and in a customer-focused way. In the first year of completely consolidated results from the SICPA Packaging acquisition, the company achieved revenue of €870 million.
   
“That’s slightly more than planned, so we’re satisfied with revenue development,” said CEO Herbert Forker.
   
Since the acquisition of SICPA’s packaging business, Siegwerk is organized in seven different business units. Flexible packaging generated the most revenue in 2006, followed by publication gravure and sheetfed/UV. Web offset has been registering strong growth for years. Siegwerk also enjoys a stable market position with its inks for label printing, tobacco packaging and paper and board. Recently, a separate business area for liquid food packaging was founded, in order to serve this market in a targeted fashion, too.
   
In a European-wide project, the production network was reorganized. As Centers of Excellence, three major sites in Germany, France and Switzerland serve customers directly. In other countries, internal blending centers receive concentrated inks that are further processed and delivered according to customers’ wishes. “In this, we are following an important demand of our customers,” said Mr. Forker. “We are securing consistent product quality in Europe and other regions.”
   
Along with product quality, the topics of “trusting cooperation” and “quick support for customers on site” are the focal point of all Siegwerk’s initiatives. In all the world’s important markets, Siegwerk is represented by highly qualified service technicians who can react to customers’ wishes swiftly.
   
“In this, we offer real added value, which helps printers reach their efficiency and revenue goals – and thus work successfully,” Mr. Forker said.
   
The rise of raw material prices have influenced Siegwerk significantly. More the 50 percent of company costs are raw material-based, leading Siegwerk to start a price increase initiative. Global sourcing of more efficient and cheaper quality raw materials is also a must.
   
Aside from higher raw material prices, Siegwerk is working diligently on the changing nature of the printing industry, as existing printing overcapacity leads to price pressure on end products, while decreasing profit margins of printers lead to cost/efficiency program demands from Siegwerk. Continuous work on improved, more efficient production techniques and reacting with new service concepts are helping customers and Siegwerk to stay effective.
   
The web offset market has its own particular challenges, as heatset printers have a rather low liquidity, which has led to a couple of bankruptcies mainly in Europe. Siegwerk officials are seeing a slight recovery in terms of printed volume, but due to higher efficiency and color management systems, higher mileage and hence a limited growth of inks consumption in web offset.
   
To meet the ever-changing needs of its customers, Siegwerk’s R&D is developing key solutions, such as working on low migration issue claims for high tech solutions, formulating high speed printing inks for the new generations of printers.
   
The ongoing trend to economical and ecological packaging solutions has led to barrier film laminates as substitutes for high barrier triplex structures, thus reducing weight, as well as biodegradable films. To meet these needs, Siegwerk has successfully developed the corresponding inks.
   
Siegwerk continues to be an industry leader in developing excellent inks for customers. In the past year, Siegwerk added to its portfolio a series of key new products, including VB 25 for retortable polyester laminates, printable in flexo and gravure; high opacity white UR 11 for better bar code readability, printable in flexo and gravure; Sealtech for PET packaging; polyester coatings for aluminum deodorants (the AXE brand); and Aridas for waterless coldset printing on the KBA Cortina press.
   
With the acquisitions of Color Converting in 2003 and SICPA Packaging in 2005, Siegwerk has made the leap from a Central European producer to a real global player. In just six years, revenue almost tripled. Still, the traditional values of a family-owned company – such as “long-term orientation” and “personal business relationships” – have remained intact during this process.
   
“People make the difference in our business,” Mr. Forker stressed. “Our staff still know customers personally, and every business partner has a familiar contact person. That’s the only way to maintain a long-term, mutually beneficial business relationship.”



Toyo Ink Mfg. Co., Ltd.


3-13 Kyobashi
2-chome, Chuo-Ku
Tokyo 104-8377 Japan
Phone: +81-3-3272-5720
Fax: +81-3-3272-9788
Internet: www.toyoink.co.jp
E-mail: master@toyoink.co.jp
Sales: $1.13 billion (133,526 million yen) in printing ink and graphic arts supplies; consolidated results: $2.08 billion (245,490 million yen).



Major Products: Heatset/coldset web, sheetfed and waterless; news offset; solvent- and water-based
flexo and gravure; conventional and waterless offset UV and EB; letterpress; functional silk screen; electronics and optronics; dry and liquid toners and inkjet inks; organic pigments, plastic colorants, resins and adhesives.

Key Personnel: Kunio Sakuma, president and CEO; Norio Fukumura, senior managing director; Takeshi Suzuki, managing director, CHO, CFO.

Number of Employees: 6,945 (consolidated).

Comments: As Toyo Ink Mfg. Co., Ltd. celebrates its 100th anniversary in the ink industry, Toyo Ink enjoyed an outstanding year in 2006, as the company’s sales grew 3.9 percent, highlighted by growth in China, Southeast Asia and North America and brisk sales in Japan.
    
“In the graphic arts field, Toyo Ink’s performance in China, Southeast Asia and North America markedly improved in fiscal 2006,” said Aviv Haruta, general manager of the public relations department, Toyo Ink Mfg. Co., Ltd. “Asian and Chinese markets have grown rapidly and are expected to continue its strong growth trend in the coming years. In China and Southeast Asia, we saw considerable sales growth in printing inks and polymer chemicals. New production bases for plastic colorants were set up in Thailand and Vietnam. We will continue to expand our business in these targeted areas. In North America, printing inks and plastic colorants attained strong sales following sales expansion achieved by stepping up sales efforts.
   
“In the wake of soaring raw materials, some price adjustments were made to gravure inks,” Mr. Haruta

Kunio Sakuma
added. “The company shifted its strategic focus to offering comprehensive solutions to customers, while integration of product lines, logistics improvements and other cost-cutting measures were carried out. CTP plates achieved a strong performance with brisk sales. Collaborative alliances were used to leverage purchasing capabilities and to boost sales of digital printing presses.”
    
Higher raw material and production costs are a challenge that Toyo Ink is meeting.
   
“Climbing raw material prices had a big impact on our business,” Mr. Haruta noted. “In the wake of soaring raw material costs, we’ve intensified and stepped up cost cutting initiatives such as the integration of product lines, searching for alternative raw material sources, innovation in production methods and transport reform.”
   
Toyo Ink is renowned for its R&D, and the company continues to create leading-edge solutions that the market is seeking, whether it is for environmentally friendly solutions, high performance characteristics or for the latest technologies. Some notable developments are Toyo Ink’s Kaleido wide color gamut process inks, functional UV-curable coatings and special water-based varnish, environmentally friendly aqualess inks and non-VOC products.
   
“Demand for environmentally-friendly and high-performance products is steadily increasing,” Mr. Haruta said. “We will continue to develop and focus our R&D initiatives on products such as non-VOC, waterless, UV and wide color gamut inks. We’re also leveraging our core competencies of advanced pigment manufacture and particle dispersion to develop color/light controlling technology for LCDs, advanced electronics-related materials for organic electroluminescent displays, and color materials for digital printing such as inks for electrostatic toners and inkjet printers.”
   
On the ink side, the biggest news in terms of R&D was the introduction of the Kaleido series, which offers wide color gamut ink. Mr. Haruta noted that in the current workflow, digital cameras, scanners, monitors and software are operating in the RGB color space. While prepress can operate in the wide RGB color space, it is the final four-color CMYK printing process with its inherent limited color space requiring a printing process using six- or seven-colors. But this involves expensive equipment and hence, most customers and printers settle for the limited color range of 4-color printing.
   
“Toyo Ink evaluated the current workflow and took an uncompromised and challenging decision: to completely reengineer the four CMYK process colors,” Mr. Haruta said. “Using our pigment production knowledge, new dedicated pigments were developed. The newly developed offset inks ‘TK Hy-Unity Soy Kaleido’ expand the current CMYK gamut to a gamut that is close to 6- or 7-color printing, all this just using four colors in a 4-color printing process. A color gamut unimaginable until recently now answers the needs of designers and the photographers as well as those of the printing companies, using a fast and affordable four-color printing process.”
   
It is this knowledge of R&D and the needs of its customers that has helped Toyo Ink flourish for the past century and prepared the company for future growth.
  
“Toyo Ink’s printing ink business goes back 100 years,” Mr. Haruta said. “Our strength is that we consistently develop innovative, high-quality printing inks from the initial pigment and resin design stage through to full production. Technical and manufacturing know-how is the backbone of our development efforts on which all of our printing products are based: sheetfed and web offset, newspaper, gravure and flexo, UV-curable, screen printing and metal decorating inks. But our ink products are not limited to traditional printing. We also manufacture inkjet ink and offer a highly diversified product range that includes resist ink for LCDs along with materials for printable electronics and RFID applications.    
   
“Based on the technological and manufacturing expertise we’ve accumulated over the past century, we’re committed to offering a total solutions portfolio through market-leading printing systems as well as all related materials and printing inks,” Mr. Haruta concluded.




Huber Group          


Feldkirchenerstrasse 15
D81111 Kirchheim Heimstetten
Germany
Phone: +49-89-9003-214
Fax: +49-89-9003-500
Internet: www.mhm.de
Sales: $940 million (approximately €670 million).



Major Products: Sheetfed, coldset and heatset offset inks; water- and solvent-based gravure inks;
water- and solvent-based flexo inks; UV offset and flexo inks; security inks; and toners for laser printers and copiers.

Key Personnel: Dr. Erich Reich, CEO; Ursula Borgmann, member of managing board, R&D technical director Micro; Heiner Ringer, member of managing board, marketing and Micro integration project; Klaus Pflazgraf, member of managing board, technical coordination; Andreas Leidert, member of managing board, finance and controlling.

Number of Employees: Approximately 4,000 worldwide.

Comments: Huber Group enjoyed excellent growth in 2006, as the company continued its integrationof Micro Inks, which continued to be an important task. To help with that effort, Huber Group introduced Matrix Organization principles for the whole group to implement integration policies.
   
Raw material prices did have an impact on Huber Group, although the company’s R&D expertise helped make the necessary price adjustments more palatable for Huber Group’s customers.
   
“Raw material price increases did increase cost quite drastically, thus leading to lower margins and profits,” said Heiner Ringer, member of managing board, marketing and Micro integration project. “We did observe the development and did pass such increased cost on to the market, to that extent, as we feel necessary under mid-term aspects. No panic, but reasonable changes to the pricing of the respective product segments. R&D contributed to make such necessary price increases as ‘digestible’ as possible to the customer base by providing better press performance and property profiles.”
   
The company’s excellent R&D staff formulated some new products in 2006, and promises more are in

Heiner Ringer
store for 2007 and beyond, including new products from the Inkredible line of inks that are already making sizable gains in the sheetfed, heatset and coldset markets.
   
“We will develop some more Inkredible ink series besides the offset series introduced in 2007, through intelligent scientific combination of ink know-how of Huber and Micro with manufacturing technology stemming from Huber, Micro and InfoLab,” Mr. Ringer noted.
   
Recent changes in the print market have had an effect on the ink industry, and Huber Group has evolved as well, although always emphasizing its dedication to the industry and to the family nature of the company, adding people and developing its business with the finances available to a non-public company.
    
“In the print market, concentration of the market participants is going on equally as it has been the case in the ink industry, creating new patterns for the purchasing behavior,” Mr. Ringer noted. “Creative product and service innovation such as Ink Academy, amongst others, seems necessary to ensure that ink is not just treated as a commodity. We believe that the Huber Group employs ‘the nicer people’ that care more about the customer’s needs. Basically we are not too big, but big enough! We actually love our industry, for which we have served for nearly 250 years soon, and do find it a real challenge to continue to be one of the best in the industry. Admittedly, we are not yet really global, but we do our very best for our customers and the industry with the means available to a family business.”



Sakata INX Corp.


1-23-37 Edobori, Nishi-Ku
Osaka 550-0002
Japan
Phone: +81-6-6447-5847
Fax: +81-6-6447-5849
Internet: www.inx.co.jp
E-mail: intl-sales@inx.co.jp
Sales: $927 million (109,282 million yen in printing ink and graphic arts); $1.01 billion (106,248 million yen) consolidated.



Major Products: Commercial offset, sheetfed, heatset and newspaper offset inks; gravure inks for flexible packaging; flexo inks for corrugated carton and paper bag; metal decorating inks; UV/EB varnishes; inks for inkjet printers and toners.

Key Personnel: Hirotsugu Takamaru, president; Hiroshi Ota, senior managing director, chairman, INX International Ink Co.; Mitsuru Kojima, managing director; Masaaki Komori, managing director; Masanori Kano, managing director; Hiroshi Osawa, director; Goro Kato, director; Yoshiaki Uesaka, director; Satoru Mikake, director; Yasuhiro Hashimoto, director; Kotaro Morita, director; Junichi Yasuda, corporate auditor; Yoshihiro Matsui, corporate auditor; Kazuyuki Tamura, corporate auditor; Koji Hanaoka, corporate auditor.

Number of Employees: 2,950 (consolidated basis).

Comments: Sakata Inx had an excellent year in 2006, as overall sales increased 12.1 percent to
119,053 million yen. On the graphic arts side, the company’s sales rose to 109,282 million yen, an increase of 11.4 percent over 2006’s sales.
   
Sakata Inx’s growth was spread across the geographical spectrum. Its domestic sales increased 7 percent, while INX International Ink Company, its North American subsidiary, saw a 19.2 percent increase in sales in 2006. Sakata Inx’s sales gains in Europe (up 22.9 percent) and Asia (a 33.5 percent increase) were also sizable.
   
Sakata Inx continues to expand its operations worldwide. The company is investing INR 600 million ($13 million) to set up a new facility in India, which will be used for global sourcing. The company said its fully-owned Indian subsidiary Sakata Inx (India) acquired 20 acres of land at Panoli in Gujarat for the new facility. The first phase will be completed by 2007, and the plant will be fully operational by 2009. The plant will produce high-quality gravure packaging inks.
   
Sakata Inx Corp. entered into a definitive agreement to acquire a 50 percent stake in Nansha Sakata Ink Corp. from Siix Corporation on May 28, 2007. Upon closing, Sakata Inx Corp. will own a 75 percent stake in Nansha Sakata Ink Corp., a beverage can printing ink manufacturer, which Sakata Inx jointly established with Siix in December 1995.

In North America, INX International Ink Company is successfully moving forward in the digital ink marketplace with its acquisition of Innovative Solutions, Inc., a leading designer, integrator and manufacturer of digital printers and related products.
   
Sakata Inx continues to emphasize its commitment to environmentally friendly products, and its R&D team is developing and supplying new products, ranging from soybean-oil based inks, non-VOC inks and water-based gravure inks, aromatic compounds-free ink and non-toluene, non-MEK type inks.



Tokyo Printing Ink Mfg. Co., Ltd.


2-7-15, Tabatashinmachi
Kita-ku, Tokyo
Japan
Phone: +3-5692-7314
Fax: +3-5692-7341
Internet: www.tokyoink.co.jp
E-mail: ftd@tokyoink.co.jp
Sales: $468 million (57,646 million yen).



Major Products: Sheetfed, heatset and coldset offset inks; solvent-based and water-based gravure inks; inkjet inks and dry toners; fountain solutions and printing additives.

Key Personnel: Atsuo Ohashi, president; Kenzou Kawaziri and Yoshihiko Yokota, senior managing directors; Osamu Kaneko, senior managing technical director; Ryoichi Yamakoshi, technical director.

Number of Employees: 699.

Comments: Tokyo Printing Ink Mfg. Co., Ltd., one of the leading Japanese ink manufacturers, enjoyed
solid growth in 2006, as the company’s sales increased 3.2 percent.
   
Founded in 1923, Tokyo Printing Ink has a major presence in Japan, with four offset ink and one gravure ink manufacturing facilities. The company also has alliances throughout the Asia Pacific region, as well as a presence in Mexico and the U.S., where it has a subsidiary, Tokyo Printing Ink Corporation U.S.A., located in Rancho Dominguez, CA.     
   
Tokyo Printing Ink’s major product lines include its Zipset offset inks, featuring sheetfed, heatset, coldset, UV, metallic, rubber-based and magnetic inks and process and Pantone colors, as well as inkjet inks and dry toners. In addition to its inks, the company makes synthetic resins, color and additive concentrates and compounds and other chemical products. The company is also successfully developing its nanotechnology portfolio.



SICPA Holding SA


Avenue de Florissant 41
1008 Prilly
Switzerland
Phone: +41 21-627-5555
Fax: +41 21-627-5727
Internet: www.sicpa.com
E-mail: security@sicpa.com
Sales: In excess of $400 million.



Major Products: Security inks and features for intaglio, offset, screen, gravure, flexo and inkjet printing of banknotes, documents of value and solutions for brand protection. OVI (Optically Variable Ink) for securing banknotes and identity documents. SICPA OASIS dual authentication color-shifting ink for documents of value and product protection applications. SICPATRACE Track & Trace system for protecting consumer health and enhancing government revenue from taxable goods.

Key Personnel: Maurice A. Amon and Philippe Amon.

Comments: SICPA has long been the leading global provider of security inks and solutions. For
example, most of the world’s banknotes are being printed using SICPA’s inks, and the company’s innovative inks play critical roles in protecting other documents of value, including passports, excise or postage stamps, cheques and lottery tickets, from counterfeiting or tampering.
   
However, SICPA is also leveraging its capabilities to provide industry with security measures. SICPA Product Security division is successfully developing products to protect businesses ranging from pharmaceuticals and luxury goods to tobacco, alcohol and food from the growing financial and health threats created by counterfeiters.



Inctec Inc.          


450, Aoto-Cho, Midori-ku
Yokohama
Japan
Phone: +81-45-932-5121
Fax: +81-45-933-7422
Internet: www.dnp.co.jp/inctec/home.htm
Sales: $367 million (45,870 million yen).



Major Products: Sheetfed, web offset (heatset, coldset), waterless, UV offset, news, solvent-based and water-based gravure, UV and water-based flexo, digital ink and toner.

Key Personnel: Itsuo Totsuka, president; Tomio Koike, senior executive officer, sales division; Mitsutoshi Arotimi, executive officer, technical division; Takayoshi Yanagawa, officer, manufacturing division.

Number of Employees: 828.

Comments: In fiscal 2006, the sales of Inctec Inc. were almost the same as the previous fiscal year.
However, profit declined as Inctec Inc. couldn’t transfer increasing material costs, primarily due to surging oil prices, to its products.
   
To cope with this situation, Inctec Inc. has been taking various measures. To raise productivity, Inctec Inc. has transferred its manufacturing base of news inks to a fully automated factory in Utsunomiya from Yokohama.       
   
In important personnel news, Itsuo Totsuka was named the new president, replacing Shigemitsu Hatakeyama, who had steered Inctec Inc. for more than 12 years. Mitsutoshi Arotimi of the technical division was appointed as an executive officer with representative right.   
   
Inctec Inc. has continued to develop eco-friendly inks, as the total amount of eco-inks are increasing. For gravure inks, the ratio of non-toluene and non-MEK is increasing, and for news printing, Inctec Inc. is promoting its neutral type dampening chemicals following last year, instead of the alkaline type widely available now in the market.   
   
In 2007, Inctec Inc. introduced Web Shine Soybi Vista, a new web offset ink that offers both high quality and high productivity by reducing ink piling on blanket, which is peculiar to offset printing.



Fujifilm Sericol International Ltd


Pysons Road, Broadstairs
Kent CT10 2LE
UK
Phone: +44 1843 866668
Fax: +44 1843 872126
Internet: www.fujifilmsericol.com
Sales: $275 million (Ink World estimate).



Major Products: UV screen, UV flexo, UV digital (piezo inkjet), solvent-based digital and solvent-based screen inks; screen pre-press; Inca Digital Presses.

Key Personnel: Ed Carhart, CEO; Jerry Avis, strategy and business development director; Mitch Bode, senior VP, North America; Jeff Hand, regional director, Asia/Pacific; Peter Kenehan, managing director, Europe; Roy Wiles, finance director; Malcolm Frier, HR director; Rob Fassam, technical director; Keith Harley, marketing director, Europe; Terry Mitchell, marketing director, North America.

Number of Employees: 1,250.

Comments: Fujifilm Sericol continued to grow its global screen, flexo and digital ink business in 2006.
Ed Carhart, CEO of Fujifilm Sericol, commented, “Our keen understanding of the capabilities and economics of screen and digital print technologies has enabled us to offer print solutions that improve both the quality and profitability of our customers’ printed output. Our market success is a direct result of our More Than Ink…Solutions approach.”
   
Fujifilm also launched its Digitally Driven strategy, a global initiative that expands its portfolio of digital equipment, and digital ink solutions.
   
“Fujifilm is a technology driven company with a reputation for market leading innovative products,” said Mr. Carhart. “Fujifilm’s expansion in the wide format digital print will extend that reputation as all the Fujifilm companies within the graphic division leverage each other’s strengths to better serve our customers and grow our respective businesses.”
   
During 2006, the convergence of print technologies and the evolution of new faster digital equipment have challenged traditional screen print production. As a result, the worldwide use of screen inks has declined. However, Fujifilm Sericol USA saw growth in its graphic screen ink business.
   
“In-line screen printing remains a very cost-effective print method, particularly for long production runs,” Mitch Bode, senior vice president for North America, said. “Despite the rapid growth and use of digital technologies, our North American screen ink business grew in 2006.”
   
In Europe, trends were slightly different with offset and digital print being adopted at a faster rate. “We continue to record double digit growth in both UV and solvent digital inks,” reported Pete Kenehan, managing director, Europe.
   
The economics of digital print, particularly at low run lengths, and the ever improving print quality of digital are two factors that fueled the growth of digital presses and digital inks worldwide. Fujifilm Sericol’s Uvijet UV digital ink has grown significantly as more Inca Columbia Turbo and Spyder 320 press platforms have been sold.
   
Fujifilm Sericol also launched two new press platforms, the Acuity HD 2504 and the Vybrant series. Acuity is the first high resolution, value-based UV flatbed press and utilizes proprietary greyscale printheads for production of near-photographic quality wide format images. The Vybrant series is a line of reliable, high output roll-fed solvent digital presses utilizing Color+ inks for production of outdoor signage, fleet graphics and banners.
   
“Acuity and Vybrant complement our existing line of Inca UV digital flatbed presses and enable us to provide our customers with a broader array of digital print solutions,” reported Bob Linck, international market development director.
   
Fujifilm Sericol also launched Onset, a breakthrough in digital printing speed and output. Jerry Avis, international strategy and business development director, considers the Onset to be an important step change for the print industry. “The Inca Onset is so fast that for the first time digital technology provides a highly competitive alternative to offset presses,” Mr. Avis said.
   
Fujifilm Sericol continues to introduce new technology inks for screen, flexo and digital applications. “We have formulated new graphic screen inks for adhesion to a broad number of substrates, as well as UV flexo inks for shrink sleeve labels and UV and solvent digital inks for all our press platforms,” reported Rob Fassam, technology director for Fujifilm Sericol. “We work very closely with Fujifilm chemists to develop new raw materials that enable us to significantly improve ink performance for a number of different and challenging applications. The technical capabilities of Fujifilm have expanded our ability to develop innovative products for our customers.”
   
Rapidly rising raw material prices and higher energy costs were particularly challenging for Fujifilm Sericol in 2006. Market conditions in Western Europe were also difficult as many countries experienced slow economic growth that dampened the demand for print. Although some raw materials have increased in price, Fujifilm Sericol uses its global purchasing power and formulation expertise to offset some of these increases.
   
Scott Holub, vice president international operations, stated, “Our sourcing group is continually challenging our suppliers to develop innovative packaging or implement new supply chain systems to reduce cost. We understand that costs need to be kept to a minimum to help our customers remain competitive in the marketplace.”
   
With rising fuel costs, Fujifilm Sericol also looked for ways to work more closely with customers to reduce shipment frequency. “Our Vendor Managed Inventory Program is just one example of how we partner with large volume customers to help reduce shipment frequency in an effort to reduce cost.” Mr. Holub added.
   
Fujifilm Sericol sees its Digitally Driven initiative as a key component of future growth. Mr. Carhart commented, “The expansion of our portfolio of digital presses enables us to serve a broader number of customers with innovative digital solutions. Digital complements our market leading position in screen inks, and enables printers to offer the quality, cost effectiveness and response time demanded by their customers. We remain very optimistic about our future.”



T&K Toka Co. Ltd.


34-8 Hon-cho, Itabashi-ku
Tokyo, Japan 174-0055
Phone: +81-3-3963-0512
Fax: +81-3-3963-5249
Internet: www.tk-toka.co.jp
E-mail: overseas@tk-toka.co.jp
Sales: $245 million (28,889 million yen); $373 million (43,987 million yen) (consolidated).


 
Major Products: UV offset, letterpress, flexo and screen inks; sheetfed offset inks; web offset heatset inks; waterless offset inks; gravure and flexo packaging inks; water-based varnishes; metal decorating products.

Key Personnel: Ryozo Masuda, chairman; Yoshikatsu Masuda, president; H. Harry Morita, manager of overseas division; Katsuhito Yoshimoto, director for overseas division Masanao Kobayashi, managing director for R&D.

Number of Employees: 486 (T&K Toka); 1,300 (consolidated).
 
Comments: Celebrating its 60th year, T&K Toka is one of the leading ink manufacturers in Japan. T&K Toka is highly respected for its excellent inks, and has made its mark as a specialist in UV technology. The T&K in the company’s name stands for Technology and Kindness, which emphasizes the company’s commitment to its customers.
   
In major news, Ryozo Masuda was named T&K Toka’s new chairman, and Yoshikatsu Masuda was selected as its new president.
   
T&K Toka had a solid year in 2006, as the company’s sales rose 3.9 percent, led by its UV products. T&K Toka saw sales volume increase in all segments except for web ink, although sales were down in all segments except for its core market of UV. In addition, prices were on the decline, with the exception of Korea, where the company was able to achieve some price increases. Raw material price increases are impacting the company, which is trying to minimize the range of increases for each material through negotiation.
   
China remains an excellent growth area for T&K Toka, as Hangzhou Toka Ink, T&K Toka’s joint venture in China, is the second-largest ink company in China. In 2006, the company opened a new plant at Hangzhou Toka Ink. In addition, the company has operations in Korea, Hong Kong, Indonesia and Bangladesh, and a U.S. distributor, Top Level Ink, in Dallas, TX.
   
T&K Toka developed a series of important new products during the past year, including Broad, T&K Toka’s new sheetfed process color ink system; the Stealth overprint varnish, which protects the printing surface; and its new UV ink for nitrogen substitute UV lamps.



Dainichiseika Color & Chemicals   


7-6 Bakurocho 1-chome
Nihonbashi, Chuo-Ku
Tokyo 103-8383 Japan
Phone: +81-3-3662-7111
Fax: +81-3-3669-3936
Internet: www.daicolor.co.jp
Sales: $240 million (Ink World estimate); consolidated sales $1.44 billion (170.2 billion yen).



Major Products: Sheetfed, heatset, waterless and UV offset, gravure and specialty inks; security and banknote inks; and overprint varnishes.

Key Personnel: Osamu Takahashi, chairman and president; Kazuhiko Arai, director of business headquarters office, finance, sales and manufacturing, and director; Koji Takahashi, senior managing director, corporate administration department, assistant to the president and director; Minoru Yamamoto, vice president, composite printing systems and director; Mineo Tosa, senior managing director, prepared color and chemicals group and director; Shigemitsu Yamazaki, senior managing director, general affairs and personnel and director; Keisuke Yamamoto, managing director, composite printing systems, offset and director; Michiei Nakamura, managing director, technical research center and technology commercialization office and director; Yoshihisa Makino, director of Western Japan sales operations and director.

Number of Employees: 2,700 (colorants and printing inks; 3,423 (worldwide).

Comments: Dainichiseika Color & Chemicals had another outstanding year in 2006, with overall sales increasing 11.2 percent to 170.2 billion yen, with the colorants and printing inks division’s sales also enjoying strong growth.
   
The company anticipates further expansion in the global economy for 2006 as well as sustained expansion in the Japanese economy. However, higher raw material prices continue to dampen the recovery, and Dainichiseika Color & Chemicals sought to offset these price increases by adjusting their prices while increasing its R&D efforts.
   
According to reports, Dainichiseika has announced that it will refrain from selling chrome yellow pigments, which it does on behalf of another company, and will cease production of some metal oxide complex pigments, particularly those based on chromium (VI) chemistry. Its activity review has reportedly been prompted by a combination of business and environmental concerns. Dainichiseika will not, however, be withdrawing from ferric ammonium ferrocyanide (ultramarine) pigments, which it produces at Kyosei Chemical, its joint venture business with Kuraray.
   
The company is also reportedly capitalizing on its Chinese and Indian connections by widening its current local procurement of organic-pigment intermediates to crude pigments. The move will reduce production costs and allow it to flexibly meet clients’ requirements in terms of price and quality, and is part of efforts to strengthen the competitiveness of its organic pigments business.



Royal Dutch Printing Ink Factories Van Son


P.O. Box 44, 1200 AA
Hilversum, Holland
Phone: +31 35 688 44 11
Fax: +31 35 688 44 04
Internet: www.vanson.nl
E-mail: info@vanson.nl
Sales: $150 million (Ink World estimate).



Major Products: Vs5 series, Quickson Plus, Quickson MultiFresh and Signature offset inks; Aqua Base Plus series water-based flexo inks; Van Son ArtColour and Van Son EasyPrint inkjet inks.

Key Personnel: Paul M. Brouwer, president.

Number of Employees: 280 (Ink World estimate).

Comments: Led by its offset and flexo lines, Royal Dutch Printing Ink Factories Van Son had a solid
year in 2006.
   
In the U.S., the company has made inroads in the mid- and large-sized commercial offset business, developing a line of new products as well as its Vs series of commercial sheetfed inks. For the Vs series, Van Son created a distribution network of ink manufacturers who in most cases sell locally their own brands as well as the Vs inks, thus providing commercial printers the local service and technical support they require.



Wikoff Color Corporation


1886 Merritt Road
Fort Mill, SC 29715, USA
Phone: +1 803-548-2210
Fax: +1 803-548-5728
Internet: www.wikoff.com
E-mail: marketing@wikoff.com
Sales: $133 million (Ink World estimate).



Major Products: Sheetfed and web offset inks, solvent- and water-based flexo and gravure inks, energy-curable inks and coatings, overprint varnish and aqueous coatings.

Key Personnel: Phil Lambert, president and CEO; Daryl Collins, VP of national sales and regional operations; Martin Hambrock, VP of Canadian operations; Don Duncan, director of R&D; Ron Zavodny, director of purchasing; Buck Rorie, VP of finance and administration; Geoff Peters, VP of operations and technology.

Number of Employees: 600.

Comments: During 2004 and 2005, Wikoff Color Corporation acquired three ink manufacturers, which
provided Wikoff Color with more diverse product lines and expanded geographic coverage. Now that these companies are fully integrated into Wikoff Color, the company is reaping significant benefits.
   
As a result, Wikoff Color’s sales enjoyed significant growth in 2006. Excluding increases due to the 2005 acquisition of Frontier Printing Ink, a Toronto, Canada-based flexible packaging ink specialist, the company enjoyed high single-digit sales growth.
   
“We’ve had a good year,” said Phil Lambert, Wikoff Color’s president and CEO. “We have some large customers who are busier, and we also gained some new business. We have seen growth in flexible packaging sales in the U.S. and are realizing the benefit of our expanded product lines. No one has a more diverse product-line offering for high-end applications than we do.”
   
The company also enjoyed growth in key markets outside of flexible packaging. “The folding carton market showed growth, especially our energy-curable folding carton business, which has been very strong,” Mr. Lambert noted. “Security products have also been a very good growth area for us.”
   
Higher raw material and operational costs are impacting Wikoff Color. The company did pass along some price increases, although Mr. Lambert noted the company did not recover the full costs of price increases it has received from suppliers.
   
“We are concerned with raw materials,” he said. “Pricing needs to stabilize for everyone’s long-term health.”
   
Having grown the company significantly in the past three years, Mr. Lambert felt it was time to bring on more leadership to help handle the company’s operations. One such move was the hiring of Geoff Peters as vice president of operations and technology.
   
“We have had quite a bit of growth, with three acquisitions plus internal growth, and we needed more top-management depth in our company,” Mr. Lambert noted. “Geoff Peters has a lot of experience managing very diverse functions and coordinating efforts on a high level in a couple of companies outside our industry.”
   
Overall, Mr. Lambert is optimistic about the coming year.    

“We feel we have some momentum carrying over from last year and are working on some promising new opportunities,” Mr. Lambert said.



Epple Druckfarben AG


Gutenbergstrasse 5
DE – 86356 Neusaess, Germany
Phone: +49-821-4603-151
Fax: +49-821-4603-201
Internet: www.epple-druckfarben.de
E-mail: info@epple-druckfarben.de
Sales: $93 million (Ink World estimate).



Major Products: Sheetfed inks; inks for perfecting presses; UV inks; varnishes, fountain solutions and printing additives.

Key Personnel: Joachim Erlach, executive board; Dr. Klaus-Dieter Schröter, executive board; Edgar Buck, executive board.

Number of Employees: 200 (Ink World estimate).

Comments: Epple Druckfarben AG, a Neusaess, Germany-based sheetfed ink specialist, continues to
be a leader in the sheetfed ink marketplace, adding new production capacity and starting up its new modern production system for 4-color process inks in order to ensure high quality and consistency. The company continues to develop new systems, most notably the aniva series, creating the aniva Low Ghost Series as well as its new Hybrid Series.
   
The higher costs of raw materials, transportation and energy have impacted the ink industry in recent years, and Epple Druckfarben is no exception. Having done all it could to hold down costs and increase efficiency, the company announced a price increase effective Jan. 1, 2007 in response to higher raw material prices and operational costs. This increase ensures the company’s ability to supply in the future and to guarantee its efficiency on a permanent basis.
   


Sanchez SA de CV


Oriente 171 # 367
México City
Mexico
Phone: +52 55 5118 1000
Fax: +52 55 5118 1090
Web: www.sanchez.com.mx
Sales: $93 million (inks); $138.3 million overall.



Major Products: Offset, flexo, gravure and screen inks and overprint varnishes.

Key Personnel: Ernesto J. Sanchez, managing director; Jose Sanchez commercial director (paste inks); Miguel Talamantes, commercial director (liquid inks); Jesus Mckelligan, operations director; Salvador Duran, technical manager (paste inks); Agustin Lozano, technical manager (liquid inks).

Number of Employees: 740.

Comments: Sanchez SA de CV, the leading printing ink manufacturer in Mexico, had an outstanding
year in 2006, reaching total sales of $138.3 million, which included 23.5 thousand tons of ink with a value of $93 million.
   
“We had good growth in most of our lines, exceeding 32 percent in tons in heatset inks, and 28 percent in tons in overprint varnishes,” said Ernesto J. Sanchez, managing director of Sanchez SA de CV. “Our good results also included good numbers in materials, like plates and chemicals, and printing presses.”
   
One of the keys to Sanchez SA de CV’s success is its leadership team, which has been together for more than two decades. “The actual team of directors has been with the company for more than 21 years, giving continuity and stability to the company,” Mr. Sanchez said.
   
Sanchez SA de CV has completed its recent facilities improvement, and is well set for the future.
    
“Last year we finished our new offset plant,” Mr. Sanchez said. “The new offset plant is in the same place where we had the old one and it was built from scratch. With the new plant, we double our offset capacity, reaching 20,000 metric tons a year. With this, the objective to upgrade all our facilities, including manufacturing, warehouses and labs, is over.”
   
In a key move, Sanchez SA de CV moved its service center and office in Monterrey, Mexico, from a leased facility to a more modern facility that the company owns. The Monterrey center serves as the regional office for the northern portion of the country, and it represents Sanchez’s second operation after Mexico City. The service center is used for finishing liquid inks for flexo and gravure as well as color matching for offset clients.
   
Sanchez SA de CV is facing the same raw material cost challenges as the rest of the industry, and is trying to keep costs down as best as possible.
   
“In part we solve our raw material cost by sourcing our product from China and India, but it is still one of our big concerns,” Mr. Sanchez noted.
   
Outside of Mexico, Sanchez SA de CV’s export business has been thriving, most notably in El Salvador and Costa Rica. Mr. Sanchez anticipates good news in Colombia and Chile as well.
   
Overall, Mr. Sanchez expects slightly slower growth in 2006, as Mexico faces a decrease in the GDP growth. Still, the company’s leaders believe that the ink market will grow more than the rest of the economy, like it has been happening in recent years.
  
“The economy in Mexico for 2007 is expected to grow at a slower rate than is last year, mainly because the cooling of the U.S. economy, so we are also expecting to grow less during this year,” Mr. Sanchez said. “Beyond 2007, we hope to keep growing above the Mexican economy’s growth.”



Zeller+Gmelin GmbH   


Schlossstrausse 20
D-73054 Eislingen/Fils, Germany
Phone: +49-7161-8020
Fax: +49-7161-802-355
Internet: www.zeller-gmelin.de
E-mail: info@zeller-gmelin.de
Sales: $82 million (€61.3 million).



Major Products: UV web, sheetfed, narrow web label and waterless offset inks; UV flexo and letterpress narrow web inks; UV rotary screen inks; UV inks for pre-formed plastic containers; UV inks for primographic printing of narrow web in-line cartons and labels; oil-based intaglio inks for printing currency; and a range of security inks for document authentication.

Key Personnel: Andreas Mahlich, managing director, sales and R&D; Dr. Helmut Specht, managing director, finance; Rolf Schneider, managing director, operations; Marcus Ruckstaedter, sales director, printing inks; Dr. Heinz Schweiger, technical director; Andreas Beutinger, operations manager; Damon Geer, vice president of sales, U.S.; Steven Lazure, vice president of operations, U.S.
 
Number of Employees: Approximately 300 in printing inks.

Comments: A specialist in the growing market for energy curable inks and varnishes, Zeller & Gmelin
(Z+G) enjoyed an excellent year in 2006, with the company’s sales increasing 8 percent. The company developed some excellent new products during 2006, including EB curable offset inks; the UVACURID XUV ink series for direct cup printing, which is a low migration ink; and the UVALUX U7 XL series for sheetfed offset, which is ideal for heat lamination.
       
The company enjoyed some good growth in its export business, leading to the opening of new operations in Istanbul, Turkey and Mississauga, Ontario, Canada.
   
“The Zeller+Gmelin Group will further invest in expanding into additional subsidiaries in various countries and regions,” said Marcus Ruckstaedter, sales director, printing inks.
   
Raw materials remain a serious concern for Z+G. “Raw material cost rises had a heavy impact on product development and internal compensation measurements,” said Mr. Ruckstaedter. “Where possible, raw material increases were passed along to the market, which often was difficult as they were undermined by heavy price dumping strategies of certain ink companies, which is even worse that raw material price increases or lack of material availability.”
   
All in all, business continues to looks promising for Z+G.
   
“The Zeller+Gmelin Group has faced several new business opportunities with the changing technologies of packaging decoration and the ongoing market penetration of energy curable inks and varnishes,” Mr. Ruckstaedter said.



Rieger Inks


3300 Highway #7, Suite 310
Concord, Ontario L4K 4M3
Canada
Phone: (905) 660-6446
Fax: (905) 660-5766
E-mail: riegerb@bellnet.ca
Sales: $55 million.



Major Products: Offset inks, water- and solvent-based flexo and gravure inks.

Key Personnel: Robert Rieger, president and CEO; Chester Dec, vice president, operations; Debbie Dion, CFO; Willy Voelzke and Dave Hammett, technical directors.

Number of employees: 100.

Comments: Rieger Inks consists of two divisions: Rieger Printing Ink Company Limited, which
specializes in cold web inks, and Rieger Flexo and Gravure Limited, which specializes in water- and solvent-based inks. While the company’s 2006 sales were flat compared to 2005, Rieger Inks had a strong year as it moved away from commodity businesses.
   
“We took a long look at our accounts this past year, and we chose to leave accounts that were unprofitable,” said Chester Dec, vice president of operations. “Fortunately, we were able to balance those losses out with new accounts we picked up.”
   
One key new account is CanWest Newspapers in Canada, where Rieger Inks successfully secured 100 percent of the ink business. “CanWest Newspapers is working out great,” Mr. Dec noted.
   
Rieger Inks is ISO 9001 certified, and is committed to top quality ink products along with uncompromising technical and sales support. The company takes pride in its R&D, and is developing new products to meet their customers’ needs. Rieger Inks’ success is a result of the drive to put ‘Customer Satisfaction First.’
   
“We want to make an honest buck,” Mr. Dec said. “We manufacture a little differently, and we feel that we offer a better product. We won’t be a commodity manufacturer.”
 

RUCO Druckfarben/
A.M. Ramp & Co. GmbH  

 

Lorsbacher Strasse 28
D-65817 Eppstein
Germany
Phone: +49-61-98-3040
Fax: +49-61-98-32288
Internet: www.ruco.de
E-mail: info@rucoinks.com
Sales: $44 million.



Major Products: Full line of screen and pad printing inks, UV waterless offset inks, publication gravure, full line of packaging gravure and flexo inks including UV flexo.

Key Personnel: Heinz Walter Menke, managing director. Publication gravure, flexographic printing, special gravure division: Ronald Säckl, sales manager; Dr. Wilfried Wiegeler, head of laboratory. Screen printing, pad printing, offset printing division: Jürgen Schmidkunz, division manager, sales manager, Germany; Volker Michel, division manager, export sales manager; Dr. Christel Mueller, laboratory manager. Alfred Beckers, regional director, Asia Pacific.

Number of Employees: 200 (Ink World estimate).

Comments: Founded in 1857, Ruco Druckfarben/A.M. Ramp & Co. GmbH is a market leader in screen,
pad printing, UV, flexo and gravure ink. Exports are a particular strength, with more than 55 percent of its sales exported to more than 70 nations.
  
Ruco Druckfarben’s success is partially driven by its record of product innovation. During the past year alone, the company has launched a wide variety of products for its core markets. For example, Ruco Druckfarben released UVFX, a UV ink series that does not contain any ITX, in Australia through its distributor, Jet Technologies. Inks of the UVFX series are radical curing with high color strength, brilliance and low dot gain. The low viscosity of the ink ensures excellent flow and printability. The inks are suitable for a wide range of applications on many different substrates and can be printed with standard flexo printing plates.
   
Ruco Druckfarben’s 070UV inks for waterless offset printing are suitable for decorating optical discs of all common formats, either in combination with a UV screen printing opaque white lower layer or directly onto the data carrier. Their consistency ensures very fast distribution in the inking unit, resulting in minimum set-up times. Their high color intensity enables exact dot reproduction and brilliant photo-realistic printing results at up to 145 discs /min.
    
Ruco’s new 900UV1369CD opaque white is ideal for all common screen printing machines as well as the new RDI UV inkjet ink. It offers excellent adhesion on optical discs of any format, and is suitable for all common screen printing machines. The ink’s rheological properties ensure good printability and pumpability. The opaque white is outstanding for its high gloss, high opacity and minimal shrinkage effects.
   
Ruco Druckfarben has also entered the inkjet ink market successfully with its RDI UV inkjet ink, which was developed especially for the optical media segment. In addition to very high stability, it offers excellent adhesion properties and minimal shrinkage. Ruco Druckfarben managed to win leading machine and printing head manufacturers over for this joint project, and company officials said that this marked the first time that ink, printhead and machine competences have been brought together at the conceptual stage.




Chimigraf Ibérica, S.L.   


Polígono Ind.
Can Jardí. Carcassí, 6-8.
08191 RUBÍ, Barcelona
Spain
Phone: +34 93 586 2334
Fax: +34 93 699 2152
Internet: www.chimigraf.com
E-mail: export@chimigraf.com
Sales: $42 million (€31 million).



Major Products: Water- and solvent-based flexo and gravure inks; screen inks; UV flexo, offset, inkjet and screen inks; pigment dispersions (water) and solids (chips).

Key Personnel: José Miravete, managing director; Ugo La Valle, assistant manager; Antonio López, national sales manager; Rafael Doblas, export manager; Emilio Fernández, technical director.

Number of Employees: 156.

Comments: Part of the Samor Group, Chimigraf Ibérica, S.L. specializes in the production of water-, solvent- and UV-based inks for flexography, rotogravure, for digital systems and inkjet, and screen printing. The company also offers pigmentary dispersions (chips) and auxiliary coating products.
    
Chimigraf Ibérica, S.L. prides itself on being ink artisans, and strives to innovate state-of-the-art products to meet the needs of the changing marketplace. In the past year, the company has created new UV flexo and offset inks, and the company is increasing its presence in the digital printing ink market.
   
The company’s dedication to quality is spurring its growth, as Chimigraf Ibérica, S.L. enjoyed 8 percent growth in 2006.
   
Chimigraf Ibérica, S.L. devotes much time to finding the best sources of raw materials that make the grade, and with the pressures of raw material pricing, the company has worked to find alternative sources of raw materials while further improving their production process.



Encres Dubuit


ZI Mitry Compans
1 Rue Issac Newton
77292 Mitry Cedex, France
Phone: +33 1-6467-4167
Fax: +33 1-6467-1177
Internet: www.encresdubuit.com
E-mail: export@encresdubuit.com
Sales: $34 million (€24.7 million)



Major Products: Screen printing, offset, flexo, UV and specialty inks.

Key Personnel: Jacques Mounier, president, board of trustees; Jean-Louis Dubuit, general manager; Jean-Pierre Vives, R&D general manager; Arnaud Maquinghen, sales and marketing general manager; Chystelle Ferrari, CFO; Olivier Cocagne, Europe sales director; Eric Chevy, area sales manager, East of Europe; Allaoua Aiouaz, area sales manager, Asia/Middle East/North Africa; Alexandra Biais, area sales manager, North America/Europe; Monique Paris, sales manager, Dubuit Canada; Frederic Blancher, general manager, Dubuit Shanghai; Jose Meyer, sales director, Tintas Dubuit; Phillippe Ayala, general manager, Dubuit Color.

Number of Employees: 180 (Ink World estimate).

Comments: Encres Dubuit, a UV ink specialist, had a solid year in 2005, as sales improved to €24.7
million from €23.7 million in 2005, a healthy increase of 4.2 percent. This improvement continued in the first half of 2007, as Encres Dubuit enjoyed a 4.5 percent gain over the previous year and anticipates overall growth of 5 percent.
   
Encres Dubuit has four subsidiaries: Tintas Dubuit in Spain, Dubuit Canada, Dubuit Color in Brazil and Dubuit Shanghai. Encres Dubuit is well established in foreign markets, with exports accounting for more than 60 percent of its sales.
   
The company’s best growth came in South America, where the company showed gains of 39 percent during the first half of 2007, and in France, where sales rose 8.8 percent, while Asia and North America suffered declines.
   
New products are the lifeblood of any company, and Encres Dubuit is no exception. Encres Dubuit’s new UVIGLASS series offers state-of-the-art UV screen printing on glass. Encres Dubuit has also expanded its interest into the digital market, and recently launched its new Evolution series of UV digital inks.



Brancher Company       


Parc d’activite du Saule
28170 Tremblay les villages, France
Phone: +33 2 37 38 91 00
Fax: +33 2 37 38 91 01
Internet: www.brancher.com
E-mail: brancher@brancher.com
Sales: $31 million (€23 million).



Major Products: Sheetfed offset, water-based flexo, and UV flexo and offset inks.

Key Personnel: Olivier Brancher, CEO; Sebastien Brancher, finance director; Stephane Atoumo, international development director; Jean Marie Planchon, purchase director; Patrick Pailla, industrial director; Marc Duhamel, France sales director; Magali Richard, technical director.

Number of Employees: 160.

Comments: Founded in 1840, Brancher Company is an independently-owned sheetfed offset, flexo
and UV specialist headquartered in Tremblay les Villages, France, with agencies and color matching centers in Angoulême, Lille, Lyon and Nantes.
   
Brancher enjoyed a tremendous year in 2006, with an 8 percent increase in global turnover, highlighted by more than 30 percent growth in exports. Poland, Russia, South Africa, Algeria and Eastern Europe were particularly strong for Brancher. Overall, the company’s export division accounts for more than 40 percent of Brancher’s sales.
   
In order to somewhat offset higher raw material and energy prices, Brancher implemented a roughly 5 percent price increase across the board, while also developing new sources for raw materials.
   
Developing innovative high-performance products to meet the needs of the marketplace is a key to Brancher’s growth, and the company has successfully formulated and marketed a wide variety of products recently. In response to the concerns over ITX, Brancher reformulated all of its UV inks so that they are ITX free. Among the key additions are Neutron A (ITX-free UV sheetfed ink for cardboard), Luxon (ITX-free UV flexo) and Hadron 3000 (ITX-free UV waterless inks.) Brancher’s R&D experts were also active outside of UV, developing successful new products such as Logo 18000 conventional litho featuring high pigment strength and ideal for high speed presses, and Design, a conventional litho offering high rub resistance and high gloss, ideal for matte and coated papers and compatible with 8-color machines.


Cromos S.A. Tintas Graficas


Rua Senador Mozart Lago, 51
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
21530-210
Phone: +55-21-2139-2500
Fax: +55-21-2471-3438
Internet: www.cromos.com.br
E-mail: mail@cromos.com.br
Sales: $29 million.



Major Products: Sheetfed, heatset, coldset, metalgraphic, solvent- and water-based flexo and gravure, UV offset and security inks.
Key Personnel: Jacques Antonio Aubry, president and CEO; Gero Pluecker, vice president; Flavid Cotrim, marketing manager; Celeste Magacho, technical manager.

Number of Employees: 280 (Ink World estimate).

Comments: As the Brazilian economy continued to enjoy growth, Cromos S.A. Tintas Graficas, a
leading Brazilian ink manufacturer, enjoyed a successful year in 2006 with an eye toward more gains in 2007.
   
Cromos S.A. Tintas Graficas’ strength is in the domestic market, where the company presently sells 90 percent of its ink. While it is headquartered in Rio de Janeiro, Sao Paulo is its most important region for business. The company has additional branch offices in Porto Allegre as well as Cromos Latina S.A. in Buenos Aires. Although the company hopes to increase its exports, the exchange rates are making it more difficult.
   
A sheetfed ink specialist, Cromos S.A. Tintas Graficas is strong in the offset market, where it has approximately one-third of the market, and metal deco inks. The company’s new low VOC vegetable-based sheetfed offset ink has proved to be popular with its customers.
   
Packaging inks are a strong segment in the Brazilian market, as per capita GDP in Brazil is climbing and corrugated cardboard sales rose during the first four months of 2007 by 5.3 percent compared with the year-earlier period, according to the Associacao Brasileira do Papelao Ondulado, the industry trade group. Jacques Antonio Aubry, president and CEO of Cromos S.A. Tintas Graficas, reported that packaging ink sales could rise as much as 15 percent during this year.


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