The hottest new situation of European printing ind

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The new situation of European printing industry (Part 2)

Web Offset continues to lead the trend

Polaris group bought a set of Heidelberg Sunday 4000 web offset production line, making it have six sets of 64 page web offset lines in the petty printing plant in Leeds, becoming the largest web offset printing plant in Europe. Saint Yves and goodhead group also ordered a 64 page web offset line from MAN Roland last year, which is the second set of lithoman IV for Saint Yves, while vidham, another large magazine printing group in the UK, also ordered a set of lithoman IV

new jarrold printing company announced an investment of 28million pounds to build a new plant that can accommodate five sets of web printing machines, of which two sets of 64 page KBA compacta thermosetting web printing machines will be installed in 2006. At the same time, another two sets of printing machines will be moved in

in fact, with the exception of jarrold's new order printing machines, most new web offset printing machines were installed this spring, which naturally raises the question of whether the capacity to avoid dust falling into the machine exceeds the demand. In this regard, most printers who install new machines will say: No. They believe that UK magazine publishing is in a boom period, especially with the emergence of new titles. The autumn of 2004 is the busiest season for web offset printing in the past four years

on the other hand, one of the main reasons for Polaris group to build a new gravure printing plant in Sheffield is that United Press Group decided to convert a large number of its supplement printing business from web offset printing of Quebec world factory to gravure printing. The contract was changed. Since May this year, Quebec world factory equivalent to 60% of its UK business income gap, which needs to be made up by its 15 web offset printing machines in Corby factory

the decision of United Press Group is not the only decision that UK national newspaper publishers made significant changes last year. The telegraph group changed hands and was purchased by Barclays Brothers Group from Hollinger international for £ 665million, while the International Group announced that it would invest £ 600million in the next four years to build two environmentally friendly factories and transform its three printing plants in Ireland and UK, including the installation of XXL extra large Roland colorman web offset press, which can print 86000 120 page full-color copies per hour, Another XXL colorman will be installed in a Johnson regional press in Sheffield, with an investment of more than £ 60million, and the contract with international group will be extended for another 15 years

in addition, guardian media group (GMG) also announced that it would install MAN Roland's colomban web offset press, and change the format of its Guardian newspaper and Observer newspaper to that of central Europe Berliner, with an investment of approximately £ 50million. In addition, the group also signed a partnership agreement with Trinity mirror to invest 45million pounds to purchase Weifa printing machines (two Weifa of371 machines each). The contract also stipulates that Trinity mirror will undertake to print GMG group's regional newspaper in northwest England for 15 years from 2006, while Trinity mirror has completed a three-year investment plan of 9000 pounds to build a new factory or expand Indian energy by the end of last year

comment: investment is often hundreds of millions of euros or pounds. This kind of capital operation is rare in the domestic printing industry. From the ordering model, the width of gravure printing machine is 4.32 meters, and the web offset printing machine is 64 pages, 120 pages and other XXL types. After all, this is not buying shirts or T-shirts, which is more rare in China. Large format machine not only means huge investment and high operating technology requirements, but also means that there must be a guarantee of huge printing orders in hand. Judging from the bold and courageous operation trend of the European printing industry, it shows that the competition in the European printing market has become a realm of centralization, magnanimity and internationalization. With the increase of turnover, the experimental force figures show that the number of enterprises and employed people has decreased, and the average labor production value has increased. This is not only a good thing, but also has risks and disadvantages. Once the economy is in recession, the ship will be hard to turn around. For China's printing industry, we should not only be bigger and stronger, but also have appropriate and stable regulation, which should conform to the scientific concept of development

market oriented equipment suppliers

for European printing equipment suppliers, last year was basically a mirror comparison of their customers. 2004 is the year of drupa. It is the year of new printing technology promotion and printer selection. It may be a bumper year for equipment suppliers

in terms of traditional printing, drupa shows a trend towards ultra large size and ultra-high speed web offset printing machines, and the same trend also exists in sheet fed offset printing machines. Heidelberg raised the speed of super B1 Speedmaster xl105 to 18000 per hour, and so did gaobao rapida105. In addition, post wiring processing, such as glazing and UV overprint, is also a development trend

of course, not everyone agrees that big is good. Gaobao has successfully developed the cordina web offset printing machine with compact and waterless offset printing. Last year, Gauss international group independently completed the laterally pulled out exchange devices and changeable specifications and sizes in the main production links from design and development, material supply to large component welding with compact printing tower, single-layer structure and China Zhongwang, The introduction of the concept of flexible printing system (not referring to flexographic printing) was also successful

this concept was expressed in drupa 2004. Later, Gauss international group made a public demonstration to customers at Preston factory in England during the Gauss European user conference last November. With 80000 copies per hour for 32 full-color tabloid printing, the demonstration impression is particularly profound because the first test run of the machine on white paper was only 25 days ago

in terms of digital printing, this is an increasingly important field for the ink manufacturing industry. In 2004, drupa launched a 120000 A4 single sheet black-and-white digital printing machine per hour, the improvement of the robustness of the color digital printing machine in the model, and the wide-range color inkjet printing machine is provided by new suppliers such as Canada, Czech Republic and China, and the price is half of the previous one, which attracted great interest from visitors. It is unknown whether this trend will also appear in terms of consumables

comment: for suppliers, it is important to keep up with the trend, and innovation may be more valuable. The new concept of flexible printing introduced by Gauss international deserves attention

more mergers

like printing houses, mergers among European printing press manufacturers were not uncommon last year. For example, Gauss international finally bought out the Heidelberg web offset press department, forming one of the largest web machine manufacturers in the world

ink manufacturers are no exception. For example, in November last year, Sun Chemical Company completed the acquisition of CBS printas, a Turkish printing ink company, which provides paste ink for publications and commercial prints in Turkey, the Middle East and the Balkans. However, the most important acquisition and merger may also be in BASF's ink and plate production, including the pigment production in Shanghai, the alkaline blue production in Huntington, West Virginia, and the ANI printing ink company based in Sweden, through the European private enterprise CVC investment partnership, as well as the ongoing negotiations with Shanghai for the production of couplers and chemicals. These merger and investment activities will make BASF, with a sales volume of 854million euros in 2003, a light and heavy player in the ink industry, with 65 subsidiaries in 30 countries and marketing networks in more than 50 countries. Like Gauss International Group, its influence in the industry will gradually show

at the same time, European ink manufacturers are going through the difficult period pointed out by the British paint Federation (BCF). BCF represents uk25 ink manufacturers, which tracks the purchase price of all raw materials in ink production. According to its independent statistics, by September 2004, the price of acrylic acid had increased by 40%, and the price of solvent had increased by 25 ~ 35%, and it was still bullish. Therefore, BCF warned users that the price of production members may rise by 5 ~ 15% this year. In fact, some manufacturers have raised their prices. For example, in November last year, the price of all inks or coatings supplied by Sun Chemical Company to European flexible packaging increased by 3-7%. Their reason is that petrochemicals are the main component of most products, which have been rising in recent months. Coupled with the rising costs of environmental protection, transportation, packaging and other aspects, their products have to rise in price. In addition, there is a long-term shortage of some key raw materials, such as the suspension or reduction of production by suppliers of titanium dioxide, resin and acrylic acid derivatives. Many raw materials are supplied with quotas, and there is no possibility of mitigation for the time being. Sun Chemical Company has basically maintained its original price for four years. In the past four years, the company has worked hard to improve efficiency, digest rising costs, and maintain the competitiveness of products and users. This price adjustment is only part of the compensation for the excessive rising costs. Otherwise, there is no way to maintain the minimum return on investment. It is really a must, and I only hope to get the understanding of printers

short comment: printers, equipment manufacturers, ink and consumables suppliers, under the situation that the rising oil price drives the general rise of raw material prices, the cost of their own products has increased or not, and the sales interest margin can only decrease again and again in the face of fierce competition, which has frequently faced unsustainable difficulties. However, some leading enterprises have long been committed to professional production, with huge investment, rich experience, good management and deep feelings. It is not easy to give up or change careers?! The only way out is to merge with the industry in order to maintain its long-standing position and reputation in the industry. It is reported that there are about 125 ink manufacturers in Europe, but the sales of seven world-class giants such as sunchem and BASF account for 90% of the total in Europe. However, there is another relative situation. For example, when Gauss purchased the production department of Heidelberg web offset press, Heidelberg also sold the production department of digital printing equipment to Kodak, which is also a wise decision to adapt to the situation. Put your fist back, in order to accumulate strength in the sheet fed offset press system, so as to give better play to your advantages and strengths. In short, all this reflects that although the current European printing industry has improved since 2004, it has not yet come out of a difficult situation. No wonder the sound of mergers is still heard; Expanding the scope, speeding up the speed and improving efficiency to maintain competitiveness seems to be the only way left. The development trend of production and operation is giant and globalization, but efficiency is not necessarily profitable, and large investment also increases risks. The future is not absolutely optimistic. We can only hope for the improvement of international peace and economic situation. However, in any case, as the helmsman of Indian enterprises, we should remain sober, size up the situation, compete in development, and develop in competition, which has always been the reliable motto of enterprises. According to the latest "printing managers" top 100 ranking table, Shenzhen Jinjia color printing group ranked first in 2005 with a sales revenue of 2.623 billion yuan, an increase of more than 600million yuan over last year (with the participation of Kunming color printing). In addition, among the top 10, 8 are enterprise groups, indicating that China's printing enterprises are also developing towards collectivization and giant, and there are also examples of the giant scale of individual enterprises, such as Shenzhen Hongxing and Heshan yatushi, whose sales revenue exceeded 1billion yuan last year. From the overall situation of income and profit, the packaging and printing industry still accounts for the majority, which is also one of the reasons why the printing industry in the Pearl River delta still accounts for the top

(according to Caryl Holland's report, shape of things to come, originally published in inkmaker magazine, the first issue in 2005. The comments are added by the author.)

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