As is readily apparent in reading this issue’s cover story, the Top International Ink Companies, the past year has been challenging, to say the least. In the report, which begins on page 16, ink industry executives note that raw material price increases, combined with the global recession and shrinking demand for printing, made for a very difficult year.
We have seen the changes that have occurred, as some ink manufacturers have closed their doors, and others have been acquired. On page 8, I focus on Sun Chemical’s acquisition of Handschy Industries from Graphic Packaging, and what this means for Sun Chemical going forth. It almost certainly won’t be the last acquisition that will occur in the coming year.
However, not all of the news is bad. In fact, there are quite a few markets where growth is still the norm, and inkjet technologies are perhaps the fastest-growing segment.
In The Inkjet Ink Report, which begins on page 30, inkjet ink leaders discuss the results from the past year, and also note the impact of the recession on digital printing. Essentially, these companies all reported growth, and added that the major economic repercussions have come as financing for new capital equipments – i.e. new digital presses – has slowed, thus putting a slight crimp into the growth of inkjet.
There is plenty more to tell, which can be found online at www.inkworldmagazine.com. There are lots of new technologies, and ink executives discuss key opportunities for growth and some of the interesting new applications they are seeing, including printed electronics.
All in all, there is much enthusiasm for the opportunities that lay ahead for inkjet, as digital press manufacturers, printhead designers and ink companies develop the technologies that will drive growth in the coming years.