InfoTrends has been busy publishing wide-format market research in January, including three different forecast-based reports on various market segments. The firm’s research paints a portrait of an industry in transition with solvent devices declining in popularity as more environmentally friendly alternatives such as UV-curable machines and durable aqueous devices including HP Latex printers grow in popularity. Meanwhile the wide-format toner-based market is maturing, although color toner-based machine are providing the industry with some growth opportunities in the technical printing market.
An InfoTrends survey of 117 end users who plan to purchase a new wide-format printer showed that when asked about device type, nearly half of respondents said they plan to purchase a UV-curable machine, nearly 32 percent wish to purchase a Latex or other durable inkjet device, and 20.5 percent wish to purchase an eco-solvent printer. Only 13.7 percent wished to purchase a traditional or hard solvent machine. Fewer still (about 11 percent) wished to purchase a traditional aqueous inkjet device.
Wide-Format Toner Market Mature but Color Growing
On January 4, InfoTrends announced its 2011 Wide Format Toner-based Printing and Supplies Forecast, which is available now for $4,995. It should be no surprise that the worldwide market for these devices is relatively mature, with shipments expected to grow at a 4.6 percent compound annual growth rate (CAGR) through 2015.
InfoTrends warns, “To find growth in revenue and profits manufacturers are going to have to be innovative in terms of products and sales process.” The company highlights emerging markets, color, and managed print services (MPS) as potential drivers of growth for some companies. Color-capable devices, for example, are expected to see shipments grow at an 18.6 percent CAGR through 2015. Commenting on the opportunity in emerging markets, InfoTrends director Tim Greene comments, “The fast-growing economies on the Asia Pacific region and in South/Latin America are representing a greater portion of the shipments of wide format technical printing equipment than ever before.”
A Look at the Solvent Market
On January 10, InfoTrends announced its 2011 Wide Format Solvent Inkjet Printing and Supplies Forecast, which is available now for $4,995. According to the research company, the solvent wide-format market is in decline due to the growing popularity of HP Latex inkjet devices and other durable aqueous devices that can boast of being more environmentally friendly than solvent printers and to the growth in UV-curable printers, which offer fast output speeds, fast dry times, and the ability to print on rigid substrates in addition to better environmental characteristics compared with solvent machines.
InfoTrends values the worldwide solvent inkjet printer and supplies market at $2 billion in 2012. The company’s advice is that vendors in this space should focus on low-end devices in emerging markets and diversify into other product categories.
UV-Curable Segment Growing
Announced on January 12, InfoTrends’ 2011 Wide Format UV-curable Inkjet and Supplies Market Forecast, also available for $4,995, asserts that this market segment is the smallest but most competitive segment in the wide-format digital printing industry. InfoTrends says that the market for UV-curable inkjet printers and supplies will climb from $1.42 billion in 2012 to $3.04 billion in 2015, a 16.4 percent CAGR.
According to Mr. Greene, the UV-curable inkjet market is attracting dozens of new competitors due to the attractive hardware profit margins and the high print volumes in production environments.
The trends that InfoTrends’ research highlights—the shift away from solvent machines and from monochrome wide-format toner-based machines even in technical environments—have been in play for some time. In addition to impacting OEMs, these trends will affect aftermarket supplies vendors who must adapt their supplies portfolios to reflect customers’ expected purchase patterns.
Read the original article at Actionable Intelligence: http://www.action-intell.com/2012/01/12/infotrends-releases-trio-of-wide-format-forecast-reports/