Global markets continue to shift, too. The Asia-Pacific, Latin America and Eastern European markets are expanding, while North America and Europe are more mature markets. In contrast, the raw material business, which has had significant supply and cost issues in recent years, remained stable for the most part, although at a higher level that ever before.
Major currency fluctuations were the largest change this year for ink manufacturers. Consider this: On Jan. 1, 2014, the euro was worth $1.38, and the yen was $0.00952; by Jan. 1, 2015, the euro had declined to $1.21 (it dropped further to $1.12 as of July 1, 2015, a 19% drop from the beginning of 2014). Meanwhile, the yen dropped to $0.00836 ($0.00817 as of July 1, 2015, a 14% decline). That dramatically affects purchasing power for raw materials, which then impacts margins if ink manufacturers cannot pass these changes along to printers.
There are many challenges ahead for the printing ink industry, and as our Top International Ink Companies Report shows, companies are experimenting in an effort to expand their sales. Whether it is through developing products for new printing segments, adding new operations in growing geographical markets or launching new products, ink manufacturers create new opportunities for growth. These changes will ultimately be the key to their success in the coming years.
|8||Tokyo Printing Ink||$400M|
|10||Fujifilm North America||$375M*|
|13||Yip’s Chemical Holdings||$207M|
|16||Royal Dutch Van Son||$130M*|
|17||Sanchez SA de CV||$126M|
|18||Xinxiang Wende Xiangchuan||$100M*|
|22||DYO Printing Inks||$55M*|
* Ink World estimate