Decision-makers were ready to invest at print's Olympics
By Hannah Jordan Friday, 25 May 2012
So, what was it for you? The 'Digital Drupa'? The 'Landa Drupa'? Another 'Inkjet Drupa'? Whatever your view, one is clear: at Drupa 2012 digital print became part of the mainstream.
Despite visitor numbers down 19% on 2008 – from 390,000 to 314,500 – exhibitors said the quality of visitors had improved, with decision-makers arriving ready to do business.
According to official figures the proportion of senior managers increased from 44.4% of all visitors attending Drupa in 2008 to 50.8% this year, with almost 50% of total attendees placing orders as a result of the 2012 event.
Landa launched its nano printing technology and claims to have taken deposits for "hundreds" of Nanographic presses, with the S10 B1-format model notching up the most orders, according to founder and chairman Benny Landa. He said: "I’m on such a high, the show has been so fantastic for us.
"One of our objectives was to try and jump-start the industry, by coming here with a more optimistic outlook. I imagined we would have a big impact, but what amazed me most has been the response. It has been amazingly positive, both to our message and our technology."
Digital press sales were also booming elsewhere. HP doubled its sales target for the new B2 Indigo 10000 and reported "huge" sales of the new Indigo 5600 and Indigo 7600 as well as successes with its Inkjet Web Press and label and packaging presses.
Francois Martin, worldwide marketing director, HP Graphic Solutions Business said: "Drupa 2012 proved itself this year to be a show for all print markets where visitors come to do business around commercially available solutions."
For Screen Europe, it was the shift to digital that was responsible for the "disappointing" drop in visitor numbers. Vice-president of sales Bui Burke said: "Those who are not interested in digital and have just invested in a new commercial machine have no reason to come.
"We launched and showed a number of digital offerings at the show, but we have so much more than that. We have developed our workflow for our 400 existing UK customers and are still doing the platesetters for our commercial customers, but as they didn’t come, they didn’t get to see it."
Despite this Screen continued the positive trend by exceeding its Drupa sales target by 25%. Burke said it was down to good timing: "We had just launched our Truepress Jet W1632 wide-format machine so we could rush it out of the factory to show at Drupa. It operated at prime performance, printing 100m2/hr every day flat out with incredible quality."
Elsewhere, KBA secured orders totalling "three-digit million euros".
The premiere of its RotaJet 76 digital printing machine attracted a lot of interest but although chairman Claus Bolza-Schünemann said deals had been signed, he remained cautious: "We have signed many deals with existing and new customers. However, we and the other exhibitors can only pronounce a serious verdict on Drupa 2012 in a few weeks or months when we have received down-payments from customers."
On the penultimate day of the event, KBA announced a 4% increase in group sales for the first quarter of 2012 following an 8% rise in sheetfed orders, with more being signed during the show, as well as web press orders from Germany and France.
Finishing kit supplier Duplo reported more good news raking in £2.4m during the show, £800,000 over expectations, while it made 2,200 leads across 109 countries. International marketing director Bruno Picquet said it was a great success. "It was the perfect launchpad for several new products. We also gave some clues as to our future developments, including an embossing module for the DC-745 multifunctional finishing system."
Canon also saw brisk business, with 270 production printer sales across the Canon and Océ ranges and over 10,000 new leads. Echoing many of his colleagues, professional print director David Preskett called Drupa 2012 "a real success."
Meanwhile Kodak reported "remarkable" results during the course of the event, with over 3,000 demonstrations at it’s stand alone. Worldwide vice-president of sales Eric Owen said Kodak’s performance at Drupa was a pivotal point for the company: "We were in awe of the response from the market, including both new and existing customers."
Bernhard Schreier, Drupa 2012 president and Heidelberg chief executive, said the show had "breathed new life into the sector".
"Here in Düsseldorf, transactions have been agreed and the groundwork has been laid for the industry’s successful future," he stated.
WHAT THE EXHIBITORS SAID
"Drupa 2012 has been an incredible show for HP and we exceeded our sales target for the show very early on"
Francois Martin Worldwide
marketing director, HP Graphic Solutions Business
"The quality of visitors is great and there is a really global presence here"
Paul Kapolnek Chief executive, WPM
"We’ve taken more leads than in 2008 and we weren’t expecting that, so it’s been successful. Both in terms of the quality and number of leads it’s a better show. We’re really happy"
Philip Easton Director digital printing solutions, Domino
"This has been our second Drupa and it is by far the biggest in terms of the number of people that have visited our stand"
John Blyth Commercial printing business development manager, Ricoh Europe
"We are close to having brought in €4m from Drupa sales, with 60% of our leads coming from people we hadn’t seen before"
Jochen Engelke Managing director, W+D
"We had 280 sales leads in the first three days, which was what we got in two weeks at the last Drupa"
John Gilmore Managing director, Autobond
"Drupa 2012 has been a great success for Canon and orders for Canon imagePresses are into three figures"
David Preskett Director of Professional Print, Canon Europe
"Looking at the results we’ve booked, I’d say: let’s have a Drupa every two years"
Wim Maes Chief executive, Xeikon
"Customers from all across the world visited our stand and 70% were new to us. It provides us with the perfect steps to start dancing to the Drupa song"
IK Dogra General manager, Manugraph India
"We have been very pleased with the quality of visitors that we have seen"
John Sykes Managing director, Hohner UK
"We have had 600% more enquiries than at the last Drupa"
Achim Kurreck Chief executive, HC Moog
UK DEALS ROUND-UP
- Heidelberg unveiled the next iteration of its flagship XL range, the Speedmaster XL 106, with one of the first machines slated for installation at Anton Group as part of a £14m deal
- UK POS specialist Best Digital bought the world’s first Screen Truepress Jet W1632 UV inkjet printer. The firm also bought a Truepress Jet 2500 UV wide-format printer as part of a £500,000 spend
- Buxton Press signed a £7m deal for two Heidelberg Speedmaster XL 106 perfectors as part of the company’s £20m, four-year, rolling re-equipping and expansion plan
Westdale Printing Group signed deals with KBA and Goss in a £3.8m spend. The company bought its first KBA press, a Rapida 106 model, with another 10-colour machine to be installed in the autumn. It also bought the UK’s first Goss Purlux 1200
- Packaging manufacturer Firstan ordered the one of the UK’s first Landa S10 nanographic press on the show’s first day - as its first "major move into digital print". The B1 press will be installed at the company’s Cambridgeshire plant at the end of 2013Shere Print signed for HP’s first ever sale of HP Indigo 20000 in multimillion-pound deal for the digital company (the new digital arm of Ultimate Packaging). Installation is scheduled for the end of 2013
- Anton Group ordered eight Kodak Prosper S5 Imprinting Systems and two new NexPress SX3900s. The multimillion-pound installation follows Anton’s purchase of six Prosper S5s and two NexPress 3900s last October
- Elanders put deposits down on one Landa nanographic W50 web press and two S10 sheetfed machines, which are expected to be ready for the end of 2013
- Alltrade Printers invested in two Heidelberg Speedmaster XL 106 presses and a Polar 115 X Plus guillotine. The first, a B1 18,000sph Speedmaster, will be installed at the Birmingham factory in July and the second before March 2013
Read PrintWeek contributing editor Jo Francis' comment here
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