Fremont, CA 94555
Sales: $993 million for EFI at the corporate level; Ink World estimates $150 million in ink and consumables.
Major Products: EFI has one of the graphic arts industry’s broadest inkjet portfolios with VUTEk, EFI Wide Format, Quantum, Reggiani and Cretaprint printers and presses. That portfolio has also made EFI the market leader in UV digital inkjet inks for the superwide- and, wide-format (e.g., billboards, signage, POP, etc.) and narrow web label printing markets. EFI offers a wide range of ink products for wide/superwide format and industrial inkjet markets, including UV, UV LED and water-based inks for direct to textile and transfer printing.
Key Personnel: Guy Gecht, CEO; Marc Olin, CFO; Ghilad Dziesietnik, CTO; Frank Mallozzi, SVP, worldwide sales and marketing; Stephen Emery, VP for EFI’s Ink and New Business Development operations.
Number of Employees: Approximately 3,000.
Operating Facilities: 50+ worldwide offices.
Comments: As a leader in the burgeoning digital printing and ink market, Electronics For Imaging, Inc. (EFI) has been enjoying strong growth in recent years. While EFI’s sales were relatively flat in 2017, the company sees opportunities ahead in numerous markets, particularly in industrial and textile printing.
For 2017, EFI reported revenue of $993.3 million, an increase of 0.1% over 2016. Cash flow from operating activities was $51.3 million, a decrease of 58% from 2016.
“The performance of our direct business drove record quarterly and full year revenue for EFI. We look for this growth from inkjet and software to accelerate in the first quarter,” EFI CEO Guy Gecht said. “Having just finished a very exciting Connect Users’ Conference, the EFI team is energized as we enter 2018, with a year full of new product introductions across the company and Nozomi on track for a strong first year in the corrugated market.”
Stephen Emery, VP, ink business and new business development, EFI, said that EFI’s ink operations remained strong.
“There were significant changes in the market but our customers remain busy using our digital inkjet printing technology,” Emery said. “One of the biggest changes is we are moving into higher-volume applications such as our ultra-high-speed single-pass corrugated packaging press, the EFI Nozomi C18000. There are now several installations worldwide and that technology will only grow as a source of ink volumes. Demand for ink in that market is significantly higher than the traditional display graphics market we serve.
“We also entered a partnership with Xeikon to have Xeikon take over sales and marketing for our Jetrion narrow-web press technology, but EFI remains the source for all the inks used on those presses,” Emery added. “Our company financials overall at EFI were close to flat for 2017 while our ink business continues to grow. We expect further growth as we fine-tune our product mix, including the growth in corrugated we’re seeing in the market, along with continued growth in textile inks.”
With the 2015 acquisition of Reggiani, a digital textile press specialist, EFI has developed a strong position in the digital textile space. During FESPA 2017, EFI received the EDP Award for the Best Roll-to-Roll Textile Print technology for the EFI VUTEk FabriVU 180/340 soft signage printer.
Industrial inkjet printing is also an area of growth for the digital printing industry, and EFI has developed systems for this area as well. EFI Cretaprint is an industry leader in ceramic tiles, and for wood decoration, the company has developed the EFI Cubik 700.
“EFI sees this as an important growth opportunity, and we will continue to share innovations with the wood industry around the analog-to-digital transformation,” said José Luis Ramón Moreno, VP and GM of EFI Industrial Printing.
Emery said that EFI is facing challenges with raw materials, but its supply chain remains strong.
“Since the 1970s, many of the chemical intermediaries have shifted manufacturing from the USA and Europe to China,” Emery noted. “In those early years many of these new companies were not concerned with environmental impact, and now China is putting into place strong regulations to protect the environment. When effluent violations are identified, companies and sometimes multiple companies in an area are being shut down. And this may be for a few days or several weeks. This impacts the supply and pricing in the market.
“We are working closely with our suppliers to ensure we have sufficient supply and ensuring we have alternate suppliers to handle our continued growth,” Emery added. “We continue to be the world’s largest developer of industrial UV and LED inkjet inks and rely on a strong supply chain to support those volumes.”