7-1, Kyobashi 3-chome
Chuo-Ku, Tokyo 104-8377 Japan
Sales: $1.26 billion (¥152,062 million) in printing ink and graphic arts supplies; consolidated results: $2.35 billion (¥283,208 million).
Major Products: Printing inks, newspaper inks, UV/EB-curing inks, gravure inks, flexo inks, screen inks, high-sensitive UV inks, metal decorative inks, hard coatings, graphic arts supplies, graphic arts equipment, can coating finishes, resins, adhesives, waxes, laminating adhesives, coatings and painting materials, pigments, processed pigments, plastic colorants, media materials, natural products.
Key Personnel: Kunio Sakuma, chairman; Katsumi Kitagawa, president and CEO; Katsumi Yamazaki, senior managing director and president of Toyo Ink Co., Ltd.; Hiroya Aoyama, senior managing director and CFO; Shuji Miyazaki, managing director and president of Toyocolor Co., Ltd.; Satoru Takashima, director and president of Toyochem Co., Ltd.
Number of Employees: 8,116 (consolidated).
Comments: Toyo Ink Group had a solid year in 2015, with UV and packaging inks enjoying excellent results.
Sales in the overall Printing and Information Related Business for the consolidated fiscal year (ended March 31, 2016) remained mostly the same as a year earlier, at ¥87,439 million, but operating income increased 12.8% year on year, to ¥2,977 million, showing a rise in income.
In offset inks, domestic demand for sheetfed printing, offset rotary printing and newspaper inks continued to fall due to the structural recession resulting from the shrinking printing market associated with digitization, and raw material prices, which remained at a high level, continued to put pressure on operating income. Meanwhile, on a global scale, especially in Japan and Europe, sales of products with high UV sensitivity expanded.
Offset sales were weak in China and Southeast Asia, reflecting a slowdown of economic activity. In India and Brazil, sales expanded, but initial investment costs for business expansion adversely impacted income.
Group sales for fiscal 2015 for the overall Packaging Materials Related Business rose 2.4% year on year, to ¥64,623 million, and operating income increased 54.0% year on year, to ¥2,723 million, showing a rise in sales and income.
Domestic sales of gravure inks for publications remained on a structurally declining trend, and sales of gravure inks for construction materials were also sluggish. On the other hand, domestic sales of mainstay gravure inks for packaging, mainly for food applications, were strong, and sales of new products expanded. These factors contributed to an improvement in operating income.
Sales of eco-friendly inks for packaging expanded in Southeast Asia and India. Sales of gravure inks for construction materials were also strong in North America.
Tadashi Nakano, manager, Global Business Division, Toyo Ink Co., Ltd., reported that the packaging market continues to be a bright spot in the industry on a global basis.
“This field has rapidly grown in recent years owing in part to improving economic conditions worldwide, with increased urbanization in developing economies contributing the most to recent positive growth rates,” Nakano observed. “This has resulted in significant lifestyle changes and growing consumer markets, in particular in the steadily expanding developing countries in Southeast Asia.
“With the passage of new, stricter environmental legislation in China and other areas of Asia, the printing ink industry has followed suit, shifting towards the use of more environmentally friendly products,” added Nakano. “Long a pioneer in the development of VOC-free products using renewable sources, the Toyo Ink Group continues to develop new and innovative products capable of meeting both the cost and performance requirements while effectively reducing VOC emissions.”
As environmental regulations are expected to further tighten on a global level, Toyo Ink Group will push forward with the development and business expansion of eco-friendly products, such as non-VOC sheetfed, water-based inkjet and water-based liquid inks.
“The heightened focus on sustainability offers not only big challenges but also tremendous opportunities for growth,” Nakano said. “We see solid growth across the board for UV inks, with sales of high sensitivity UV offset (low-energy UV-curable) being exceptionally strong on a global scale, in particular Europe and Japan.”
Another growth area for energy-curable inks is the packaging field, owing to their green properties, handling ease, high print quality and wide range of applications.
“In particular, for Toyo, we are seeing the most growth in UV flexo, labels and tags, and other flexible packaging applications,” noted Nakano. “We’ve also been receiving more inquiries on EB technology.”
In major news, Toyo Ink Group concluded an agreement with Yasar Holdings to acquire 75% of outstanding shares of the Turkey-based ink company DYO Printing Inks (now Toyo Printing Inks), a subsidiary of Yasar, in January 2016. The acquisition gives Toyo Ink an immediate foothold in the priority areas of MENA, Central Asia and Eastern Europe.
For Toyo Ink, drupa 2016 was another important highlight.
“This year’s show provided us with a solid platform from which to showcase our latest printing innovations and announce new industry partnerships,” Nakano said. “On the opening day of the show, Toyo Ink announced that its FLASH DRY series – including the standard Karton series, the energy-conserving HS series and LED series – was chosen as the recommended UV inks for KBA-Sheetfed’s UV presses.”
Toyo Ink also introduced an upgraded lineup of the FLASH DRY FL Kaleido series of UV flexo inks.
Toyo Ink partnered with Windmöller & Hölscher in spotlighting its newly developed LIOFLEX AQUA LIONA NF series of flexogtaphic flexible packaging inks, which debuted at drupa.
Steraflex UV flexo inks for packaging made their debut at drupa this year. Available in two grades – Steraflex and low migration Steraflex FOOD – the latest product portfolio from Toyo Ink Arets are formulated without ITX, benzophenone and VOCs, making it an environmentally friendly choice for today’s pressroom.
To expand its global supply system, the Toyo Ink Group will initiate the operation of a new manufacturing site at its Fuji factory currently under construction and a factory in Belgium specializing in food-related printing. The new site in Japan is expected to come onstream in the fall of 2016.