EFI hires former Xaar CEO as its CTO

Veteran print technology executive Dr Douglas Edwards has joined Electronics for Imaging (EFI) as its chief technology officer.

Edwards joins the company from Xaar, a company that specialises in supplying industrial inkjet printheads, where he most recently served as CEO. He was also the chairman of Xaar 3D, the company’s 3D printing joint venture with Stratasys.

Edwards replaces Ghilad Dziesietnik at EFI, who retires after nearly 25 years with the business – he was in the chief technology role for the last 14 years.

According to EFI, Edwards was selected for his extensive career as a senior print executive and R&D technologist.

Before joining Xaar in 2015, Edwards was president of Kodak’s Digital Printing and Enterprise Business with responsibility for flexo packaging, functional printing, electrophotographic solutions, commercial and consumer inkjet solutions.

Prior to this, Edwards ran Kodak’s graphics business, Prepress Solutions. Edwards joined Kodak from Kodak Polychrome Graphics (KPG), a joint venture between Eastman Kodak and Sun Chemical Corporation, where he was vice-president of R&D.

He has also held senior R&D leadership roles with International Paper, Zeneca Specialties (formerly ICI Colors & Fine Chemicals) and Ilford Photographic Ltd in the UK.

EFI chairman and chief executive officer Jeff Jacobson said Edwards possesses one of the best technological backgrounds in the industry which combines technology with demonstrated business accomplishments.

“EFI has a history of providing its customers with a competitive advantage by keeping them at the forefront of technology,” Jacobson said.

“I had the pleasure of working closely with Doug – when I was the CEO of KPG, as well as when I was the COO of Kodak’s Graphic Communications business – and I cannot think of a better person in our industry to lead EFI’s strategic and technology developments.”

Edwards says he is looking forward to bringing his inkjet experience to drive value and enhance EFI’s ‘best of breed’ approach.

“EFI was a customer of mine while with Xaar and I am very aware of the unique opportunity EFI has now to further develop a portfolio that includes many of the world’s leading digital inkjet and print workflow solutions,” Edwards said.

“EFI, with its printhead-agnostic approach, is leveraging technology from many different vendors, and I look forward to bringing my inkjet experience to help drive value from this strategy and further enhance EFI’s ‘best of breed’ approach.

“Dating back to my time with Kodak and KPG, I have long appreciated Jeff Jacobson’s approach to innovation and technology development. I look forward to working with him and the global EFI team to drive our customers’ success in high-quality print production.”

Edwards will be based in EFI’s facility in Manchester.

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