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The 8th drupa Global Trends Report was published in September 2022. The first results available from a survey conducted this spring indicate one important conclusion - overall, confidence is on the rise and all regions and markets forecast higher investment in 2023.

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Everyone has taken note of a recent project executed for Indian electric bus wraps printed on HP Latex 700 White machines. Recent major bus warp projects for various state transports include DTC (Delhi), BMTC (Bangalore), AJL (Ahmedabad), NMMT (Navi Mumbai). These projects were executed by Naitik Enterprises based in New Delhi. More than 500 electric buses in different cities were wrapped with beautiful graphics.

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Some talk about the digital transformation. Others see digitalization as an industrial revolution with the same potential for social change as the upheaval 200 years ago. In fact, a comprehensive transformation process has been under way since the beginnings of the Internet in the late 1980s.

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Change is a part of life for any business in any industry, but few areas in the global economy have undergone so much change—and so quickly as general commercial printing (GCP). The sharp decline in global print volume continues to affect the entire industry. Most print providers are still in “survival mode,” working project to project, day by day, pursuing any opportunity that may arise. Recent events are responsible for some of this, but COVID-19 isn’t the only disruptor affecting the GCP market.

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Label printing technologies have undergone a sea change after the onset of 21st century. In the beginning of new millennium, the flatbed and letterpress processes made way for the narrow web flexographic printing which eventually grew to become the most preferred print technology for labels. With technological advances in prepress and plate-making process, Flexo print quality became closer to offset. This was followed up by hybrid printing using flexo, screen, gravure and later also offset printing in a single pass. We have been seeing the convenience of desktop office printers, inkjet or laser but they remained that way for long and were not used for high quality labels in roll form. It is only in the second decade of the 21st century that digital label printing began evolving. By middle of the decade, it was growing substantially in the western part of the World, yet but in India it did not find many takers.

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Digital Printing is widely used in labels and packaging in 2019, and it will be further ensconced. The figure shows the choice that a converter faces when they decide to make an investment, as well as these there are a range of digital overprinters and sophisticated bespoke integrations, some as a part of manufacturing and filling lines. This shows the high number of players now competing in the wide range of packaging applications, offering new capabilities and functionalities, with steadily increasing productivity and lower costs.

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With the second wave of the COVID pandemic, businesses have once again been pushed to realign their strategies and make the most of their current situation. However, amidst office goers, non-office goers, and employees on temporary medical leaves – it often gets tricky to ensure continuity of work, and coordination – which in turn may sometimes hamper productivity.

In line with this Canon has put together ‘Five Essentials to thrive in the new hybrid working environment’ to ensure a seamless workflow amidst a hybrid workplace.

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My great grandfather, Thomas Kirby, once said: “Wisdom lies not in regretting the inevitable but in adapting oneself to the altered condition of things”. He printed this statement in his publication, “Saddlery and Harness”, in response to the uproar from his readers after the first car was seen in Walsall, UK in 1896. The internal combustion engine was perceived as the beginning of the end for the local allied horse trades and consequently his readers wanted to destroy its threat to protect their equine related businesses. Thomas was a brave man to challenge his customers’ cynicism by urging them to change! In many ways I relate Thomas’ statement to the digital world we live in today as it has challenged traditional analogue methods. From smart phones to the internet and Amazon, we have witnessed dramatic change in the last 25 years or so as a result of digitised technologies. Buying a digital printer is not like buying early cars where the choice in 1896 was very limited. Manufacturers, brave enough to invest the vast sums required for the R&D to develop the latest digital print technologies, have been met with trepidation from potential buyers of their equipment due to a history of failed or unstable installations. This has not been good for the future confidence of digital in the corrugated sector, but the tide is turning.

Author : Nick Kirby

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It’s a critical time for brands…

Kantar ran a theoretical test on an unnamed, but real beer brand. The team found that if the brand cut all its ad spend during the crisis, this would have a 13% impact on sales in the long run and make market share hard to recover. However, a 50% drop in ad spend would result in just a 1% drop in sales.


Source: duplointernational.com
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Over the the last twenty years, digital printing of labels has emerged and expanded. Today every second press is equipped with electrophotographic motors or inkjet heads. This isn’t surprising because the advantages of today’s digital technologies are strong, for example, printing short runs at a viable cost is now a reality (compared with traditional processes such as flexo or offset), a success-factor that fully matches and supports the trend for the ever-shorter consumer product lifecycles. Now really is the time for packaging to enter into the digital arena. Of course, the number of digital presses sold in this new segment is still much lower than the number of presses sold for labels production, but everything suggests that it is only a matter of time.

Author:Tiziano Polito

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