Drupa report says Oceania not investing

The latest drupa trends report indicates that Australian printers are lagging behind printing companies in the rest of the world when it comes to investment.


According to the report only a fifth of local printers are planning an increase in capex this year, compared with a global average of a third. Printers in the US are revealed to be the most aggressive, with half planning to increase their equipment investment spend.


Globally it is packaging which is the leading market for investment, with almost half intending to cionrease their capex this year. Functional print business also performed strongly at 42 percent, while less than a third of commercial printers and only a fifth of publishing printers said they will be increasing their capex.

North America reported some increase in prices, but Australia/Oceania reported a clear drop in pricing. Packaging prices are holding up globally, whilst publishing and to a lesser degree commercial prices continue to decline.

Not surprisingly drupa – the world’s biggest print trade show – presents a positive light on the industry. Sabine Geldermann, director drupa, commented, “The report indicates that print can be optimistic about the future. After the double blow of the 2008 global recession and the consumer shift to digital communications, printers and suppliers are taking full advantage of the slow but clear global economic revival and finding new ways to exploit emerging technologies so as to place print as a central tool for consumers.”

Recruited from senior managers who visited drupa in 2016, more than 700 printers and almost 250 suppliers participated in the survey.

The transition to digital print continues but slowly, with functional printers now largely dependent on digital print but few packaging printers reporting significant digital sales as yet. Some 60 per cent of functional printers report more that 50 per cent of turnover is digital, whilst just 12 per cent of packaging printers report more than 25 per cent of turnover is digital.

It is striking to report that only 27 per cent of all printer participants operate a Web to Print /Storefront installation, up just 2 per cent from 2014.

Plans for print investment in 2018 depend on the market sector, with flexo the most popular choice in packaging, followed by sheetfed offset. In commercial it is digital toner cutsheet colour that leads followed closely by sheetfed offset and digital inkjet wide-format. In publishing it is sheetfed offset that leads and digital toner cutsheet colour in second. In functional, it is digital toner cutsheet colour that leads and digital inkjet wide-format in second.

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