On the way to drupa – the most important trends for 2016

As the New Year is approaching, it is a perfect time to take a glimpse into the future and look ahead to the developments that will shape the industry in 2016. We have collected statements from leaders of the printing and packaging industries to gain insight into what they view as the dominant trends shaping the state of the industry in the upcoming drupa year 2016.

As the New Year is approaching, it is a perfect time to take a glimpse into the future and look ahead to the trends and developments that will shape the industry in 2016. We have collected statements from leaders of the printing and packaging industries to gain insight into what they view as the dominant trends, developments, opportunities and challenges shaping the state of the industry in the upcoming drupa year 2016.

HP – Francois Martin,orldwide Marketing Director, Graphics Solutions. Business, Imaging and Printing Group, Hewlett-Packard Company


The mega trends are set since drupa 2008 and continue to accelerate. The total commercial pages continue to decline driven by the mega trends including recession and adoption of digital means to access content. However in this market, HP Digital pages continues to grow demonstrating that the future of commercial printing is driven by digital printing.  The Packaging market continues to grow driven by the population increase.  The consumers and brand driven trends (SKU proliferation, customization, micro segmentation, etc.) accelerate the growth of digital printing solutions and HP enjoys a steady growth of pages.

In commercial printing, the B2 Indigo developments announced in 2012 materialized with more than 200 presses installed and increased high-value print jobs – mass produced volume pages will continue to decline driven by analogue over capacity. For Label&Packaging, the productivity of HP digital presses will continue to drive a stronger adoption of digital printing – Brand Owners and Print Service Providers have mutual benefits is using digital printing. The same will happen for Flexible Packaging, Folding Carton and Corrugated.  This is a just question of time. In wide-format printing we see the raise of new applications for retail – the customer experience – to compete with on-line – need to be relevant and amazing.  HP Latex Printing Technologies enable new applications not possible before and more than 30.000 units installed make it clear that HP Latex created a new way forward.

People skills are the main challenge for all our PSP.  The printing workflow moved away from few massive print orders to web-to-print and many jobs a day. The plates are replaced by electronic workflows, the inter-action with customers is moving from cost per page to campaign relevance.  The Print Service Providers are becoming more service providers than print providers.  The successful PSP create digital teams as selling and printing digital is not shifting jobs to another type of press. PSP need to value the relationship they have with existing customers and offer them more applications. The more you work with your existing customers the more you will appreciate their needs – some are defined some will emerge from showing them what digital can do.

The challenges remain the same and the future belongs to “digital believers”. PSP should not be scared by digital but the opposite. Digital and HP Digital are the best friends of PSP to adjust to a world changing daily. The sooner you embark on HP Digital solutions the better you will be able to operate in the market.  The most successful customers we have started with HP digital early and never found all kind of excuses to keep doing what was done for decades. To improve performance, invest in integrated digital print solution offering new print products or services to meet evolving customer demands.  If you are not yet convinced, visit the Hall 17 at drupa.

Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG – Harald Weimer, Member of the Management Board, responsible for Heidelberg Services


“During the drupa 2016 trade fair Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG will be exhibiting the digitized future of the print media industry under the motto “Simply Smart”. At its heart, this topic is about the pressing need for print shops to continuously improve their efficiency and respond to the global demands of end customers in ever faster and more flexible ways. To meet this need, print shops must determine how their business model can be digitized and involve their customers in this process. The highly flexible production of a growing number of personalized print products is, in itself, becoming a standard process. In the future, print shops will be embedded even more deeply into a digital supply chain with customers and suppliers, and will have to meet even greater expectations regarding additional services such as shipping and multimedia marketing.

Presented under the motto “Simply Smart”, the Heidelberg exhibits at drupa will showcase the digitized and industrially organized print shop as an essential element for successful business models in the future. Working with our partners, we want to offer futureproof products and services that help our customers to be successful. We believe that the integrated and networked print shop represents a trailblazing step for companies in our industry that want to move their businesses forward. By supplying automated processes and services, we are helping our customers to meet the demands that competitive print media production will face in the future.

The “Simply Smart” theme is the company’s response to the challenges associated with Print Media Industry 4.0. Heidelberg is offering specific benefits and making it as easy as possible to work with increasingly complex processes and technologies.”

Massivit 3D – Avner Israeli, CEO

Avner-Israeli, Massivit3D

The current primary playing field for 3D printing technology is by no means in the prototyping and very short run manufacturing of objects serving ‘engineering’ applications. But 2016, I believe, is going to be a turning point in regards to the adaption of 3D printing by print service providers. The Massivit GDP (Gel Dispensing Printing) technology is here to make a change and bring a super-sized, super-fast solution that is very relevant solution for the print service providers and the kind of work they produce, especially for those who are already digital and perhaps even more to those who are in the large format. With a solution like the Massivit 1800 a print service provider can add another dimension to his business and offer his customers innovative campaigns. This capability sits well with the need of advertisers to continually innovate, make brands more entertaining and interesting & sustainable. These two trends will mean that in 2016 we shall see more and more cases of adding 3D printing into promotion campaigns – in point of purchase, exhibitions’ design and more. The majority of print service providers and the entire echo system around them have progressed significantly and perfected the digital workflow. I assume that in 2016 and onwards we shall see how this know-how makes an impact in the 3D world. I think that in 2016 we will see different players in the graphic arts world, players who will bring solutions to the 3D printing workflow and influence it in ways that will enhance and smoothen it.

As is always the case, it is critical for the continued uptake of 3D printing that target audiences will be educated on capabilities and options. I strongly believe that the print service providers could serve as the trendsetters in this respect and help their customers (the advertising agencies, the PR companies, the marketing departments of brands etc.) to enlarge the existing offering and realize the benefits of 3D printing in promotional & advertising activities.

Müller Martini – Bruno Müller, CEO:


Successful companies continue to show us opportunities; unsuccessful companies exemplify the ongoing and relentless consolidation process. Drupa 2016 will provide all visitors with the opportunity to assess their position this fast-changing environment and to ensure that they are going in the right direction. In my opinion, the individual exhibits aren’t the most important aspect. What is more important is the opportunity to see market trends confirmed, to assess the impact of new technologies accurately and to select the right partners for long-term investments.

To remain successful, continuing technological innovations and their flexible application are crucial. The offset printing market will remain an important pillar for many in the industry in addition to the growing digital printing market so that hybrid machine solutions are called for further processing and finishing. The arising opportunities in an increasingly fragmented market can thus be realized faster with both digital and conventional production methods. I see the main focus on high quality print products with limited circulation, which are precisely targeted and are produced in a cost-effective and industrial manner.

Konica Minolta – Olaf Lorenz, General Manager International Marketing Division BEU

Minolta-Konica-Olaf Lorenz

According to Smithers Pira (The Future of Inkjet Printing to 2017 – Global Market Forecasts), Konica Minolta will play a role in high-volume colour inkjet presses through its KM-1 that will be launched at drupa. Therefore, our definition is congruent with the general understanding with the top players of the commercial printing market as well as all the factors in the industrial printing market.  For us, the high volume printing market is segmented into

– Graphic communication

– Packaging

– Functional

According to the various needs of this market, we offer a wide range of machines, e.g. our KM-1, the bizhub PRESS C1085/C1100, the MGI JETvarnish 3DS, and KIP for large format. Additionally, under the offerings of the inkjet business area (for the decorative and/or functional segment of the market) within Konica Minolta, Inc. – our parent company – we offer our Nassenger series for industrial textile printing as well as further inkjet expertise (already for 40 years) through the production of inkjet heads and ink.

One of the main tendencies as in the regular commercial printing market will be the tendency to reduce production costs and improvement of efficiency as well as trials to expand to new print applications or services. Printers have to rethink their structures in order to be prepared for the constantly evolving digital economy. Furthermore, the market will be affected by mergers and acquisitions and a concentration of bigger players will result.

This is why we at Konica Minolta put so much effort into business consultancy of our clients that should help to strive for new market opportunities by offering innovative experiments with new business models and services.

A wrong focus on mere output numbers instead of a sustainable business planning. Mere cost reductions are not a solution – a mid- to long-term focussed planning of investments and resources as well as strategical core activities are much better for the long-term success of businesses.

We follow a different philosophy, according to Konica Minolta there is not one perfect technology as such, there is always the perfect technology according to a need or the needed output of a customer.

Konica Minolta has both, inkjet and toner technology and accordingly massive expertise – so if a provider is interested in a specific output (e.g. a poster), we chose the right technology according to his needs. It is about finding the right answers to a business challenge of a client, not about a sheer promotion of THE ONE technology. We do have our new wide format colour printer series KIP 800 though for that very purpose.

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