Fundamental Change in Printing Equipment Leads to Growth

The total global market for new printing equipment was $21.5 billion in 2012 and will reach $22.7 billion by 2017.

This modest growth, averaging 1.6% annually over five years, comes after a period of sharp decline as the recession and uncertainty took hold from the 2007 high of $25.3 billion.

The Future of Global Print Equipment Markets to 2017 is a comprehensive report covering everything from integral changes in the technology, sales trends and forecasts for all major printing equipment markets to the global influence of the industry in over 20 countries. With over 100 quantitative tables and figures of research highlighting sales and market trends, this report provides exclusive intelligence in the future of this progressive industry.

Market growth will come from added value features on analogue machines and digital equipment, not from traditional lithographic, flexo or gravure printing presses. According to Smithers Pira, new presses are far more productive than previous generations, with automation and control systems simplifying the operation of the equipment. There are fewer companies still trading, and it is usually possible to replace two or three older presses with a single new one. The other reason for the change is the arrival of high quality, highly productive and reliable digital print machinery that is firmly targeting traditional print equipment as a direct alternative. with over 40,000 units to be implemented in the next 4 years.

Smithers Pira estimates that there are about 1.1 million digital and analogue presses installed and operating across the world's print suppliers in 2012, with the total number forecast to increase to 120,000 during 2007-17. This is primarily due to increased sales of digital presses as the analogue press installed base remains roughly constant.

Global print equipment market development, 2007-17, by product type in value terms

Digital equipment, inkjet and electrophotography is becoming an increasingly important segment of the print equipment supply market, with the share growing significantly from 14.2% of all equipment in 2007 to 32.5% in 2017. The trend for many analogue equipment suppliers and prepress specialists to get into digital suggests that this trend will only accelerate in future.

The prospects of digital machinery over conventional analogue print equipment were seen at drupa this year with the launch of the Landa Nanotechnology with some 400 orders for machines placed at the show. There is also great disparity between mature and developing regions and countries, with China, Brazil, India and Russia all moving up the league table of new print equipment buying countries.

While sheetfed litho machinery is the largest segment of the equipment market, the restructuring and bankruptcy troubles of the leading German manufacturers have been well publicized as they come to terms with the decline in demand for presses from their traditional customers in Europe, North America and Japan. The decisions by Komori, Heidelberg and Manroland to sign joint development agreements with Landa for their digital monographic printing signals an acceptance that the dominance of litho is approaching its end as the demands on print companies change.

The Future of Global Print Equipment Markets to 2017 is available as bound copy, electronic version, and global usage license. It is available for immediate download for £3950/$6300. For more information, please contact:

Heather Adams (US) T: +1 207 781 9632 E: hadams@smithers.com

Stephen Hill (UK) T: +44 (0) 1372 802025 E: shill@smithers.com