The world of commercial print is facing new challenges every day and commercial print owners are continually looking for creative, and cutting edge ways, to meet the ever changing tides. And, at the very same time, looking for new revenue streams and ways to grow their businesses in a space that is shrinking by consolidation and seeing margins for commodity work stagnate.
Being able to face both the market trends and the need to grow your business with few, or even one, platform is intriguing – right? Here is what I’m seeing on how one such production inkjet platform is uniquely designed to address all of these needs.
Some major trends in the industry of commercial print are:
- More and more short run length jobs
- Faster and faster turnaround and delivery times
- Print buyers continue to look for ways to lower their costs
- Growth segments in the marketplace offer an opportunity for commercial printers equipped to take advantage
Let’s face it, short run jobs on traditional offset platforms simply aren’t profitable when considering plates, make ready time, waste and the labor to get ready to run the job. However, print buyers are asking for shorter runs to lower the cost of inventory and avoid the age old problem of obsolescence. Simple reorders alleviate the pressure on the print buyer.
Faster and faster is the norm in our modern society. Amazon has even found a way, in many markets, to deliver our online orders the very same day we place an order. Commercial printers are faced with these very same expectations for faster and faster delivery.
Inventory costs money and carrying that inventory costs money. To alleviate much of this cost print buyers are ordering less, and more often. Finding the right way to run this work and be profitable at the same time can create some challenges. And, matching the color and quality of what was run for the first or second order adds to the challenge. The shorter run length doesn’t equal a same measurable decrease in the quality print buyers expect.
Taking advantage of growth segments can also be easier said than done. One segment consistently identified as one to consider is that of the short run folding carton. Many factors are driving this trend including the goal of avoiding inventory obsolescence and also from local and regional packaging runs as well as boutique and ecommerce businesses that only need smaller quantities of folding cartons to package their products.
OEM’s have been making strides to develop a platform that collectively meets these needs; i.e. fast set up for short run, profitable short run, fast turnaround times and repeatability from order to order/run to run while, at the same time, deliver a print quality at least equal to that of traditional offset.
What if there was a platform, integrated with technologies and capabilities that would address these growing market dynamics and expectations and have flexibility in its configuration to expand into adjacent growth segments? And, at a cost in use model that enhances profitability while, at the same time, offer the reliability of a traditional press?
Enter the J Press 750S from Fujifilm. The J Press 750S is the only digital printing platform that bridges the gap between traditional heavy iron offset and a digital on-demand device. That’s because the J Press is built on a durable and proven offset frame delivering unsurpassed reliability while, at the same time, incorporating the industry’s leading production Samba inkjet printheads and many other exclusive Fujifilm owned and developed technologies. The 750S is also the third generation of the J Press making it the world’s most tested and proven digital production inkjet platform.
In an industry that continues to see consolidation and price erosion for commodity print there are areas to shine for those willing to learn and invest in the newest generation of technologies to help get them there. A recent article published by SGIA and NAPCO Research summarized how printers are approaching these trends and how they are viewing the opportunity to take advantage and grow their businesses. In the article’s Executive Summary, it stated: “Printers clearly identified an opportunity to better serve their customers with services outside of their current primary offering(s), with 95% reporting there is opportunity for expansion within their own businesses, and 93% saying they believe expansion is happening within the industry as a whole.”
The time is now and the technology is available now to position to win by taking advantage of the trends in our industry as opposed to being passed up by them.
Source: Convergence In The Print Industry: Understanding Growth Opportunities and Competition. SGIA and NAPCO Research, June 2018.