Xaar maintains its position in India by strengthening its business with its wide portfolio of inkjet printheads and new technology
Xaar, the world leader in industrial inkjet technology and ceramic tile decoration printheads has strengthened its business in India with its wide portfolio of inkjet printheads and new technology for a variety of print applications.
Xaar, the world leader in industrial inkjet technology and ceramic tile decoration printheads has strengthened its business in India with its wide portfolio of inkjet printheads and new technology for a variety of print applications. The company also sees packaging and textile printing as another important market in India. Doug Edwards, CEO, Xaar at a recently held press conference in Gurgaon, gave us insight on the variety of products and technology the company has launched and how they see Asia as its biggest market followed by Europe and North America.
Founded in 1990, Xaar, listed in London Stock Exchange, has a turnover of 96.2m pound and employee strength of 600. The company has a regional office in India for the last 13 years. Edwards said it is the only printhead manufacturer to have a local direct presence.
Besides ceramic tile decorations, the company sees great potential in package printing and textile printing with the help of digital printing and there is great potential for inkjet for these segments. Another area that Xaar is focusing on is direct printing on product. Besides, Xaar is also looking to explore the potential in the commercial printing market.
Leader In Indian Market
India is an important market for the company, which has already the largest share in the ceramic tiles decoration market. “We have a very good market share of nearly 70%.” he said, “For us it is important to maintain our leadership position because when you are the market leader everybody wants to take the business away from you. So our major strategy is to maintain our market share.” Edwards also outlined the importance of the Indian market to the company’s global goal to reach annual sales of £220m by 2020.
Strong Presence & End-to- End Digitalization
Talking about the focused area in India, he said, “Morbi is the main hub for ceramic tiles. That is the area we are actively present and go to end-users and try to educate them about our products. So that’s probably one industry where we are in touch with the end-users most of the time. We keep updating them. We do seminars where we train their technicians, the machine operators and the OEMs technicians as well; at times we do one-to-one with them wherein if they have questions, we go and visit their factories. If they have any problems, we try to talk to our OEMs and get the problems soughed.”
He also spoke about End-to- End digitalization in manufacturing process. He said, “Now the industry is much of design and fashion business. Manufacturers are always looking to differentiate their products. They are looking at proper parts of the process because in many ways they have realized maybe 80% of the benefit of the digital transformation is the printing and decoration of the tiles. There are many steps in the process that are still very analog. Now there are all costly steps, so I think they have started looking at how they might digitalize the process but at the same time differentiate their end products.”
Endless Possibilities with New High Laydown Technology for Indian Ceramics and Packaging markets
And with our High Laydown (HL) technology this can be done. They can do different effects like matt and sinker. High Laydown (HL) has the ability to print on much larger, much thinner tiles and this is what digital enables them and has opened up all starts of new markets for them.
Edwards also announced Xaar’s High Laydown (HL) technology, initially launched in the Ceramics market, is now available for packaging customers, enabling raised effects to be added to substrates, transforming standard labels and folding cartons into high value packaging for products that can command a premium.
In ceramics applications, High Laydown allows effects such as gloss and adhesives to be applied with unprecedented laydown levels. For example, the Xaar 1003 C with HL technology can achieve a laydown of up to 90 g/m2 at 35 m/min line speed. For labels and packaging, High Laydown technology with UV varnish enables raised or tactile effects to be printed in single pass and with a single print bar – for example, the Xaar 1003 U with HL technology can achieve a varnish film thickness of 80 microns at 25 m/min line speed. Competitor offerings typically require multiple print bars or much lower line speed to achieve the same result.
In addition, the recent printhead launches from Xaar are starting to shift the company towards a broader reach. Of particular interest to the Indian market are the Xaar 1201 and Xaar 5501, both of which are capable of handling aqueous inks. This means that OEMs looking to produce textiles or graphics printers using water-based inks now have access to robust and reliable technologies.
Already making a significant impact in Asia, the Xaar 1201 is a Thin Film Piezo Silicon Micro Electrical Mechanical System (MEMS) technology printhead for printing Wide-format Graphics (WFG) and Textiles with dye sublimation, eco-solvent or aqueous inks. To complement the Xaar 1201, Xaar recently announced the Xaar 5501, which previewed in China a few months ago. This compact and lightweight printhead is the first product resulting from Xaar’s collaboration with Xerox, and delivers high print quality combined with low printing costs, whilst integration costs will also be kept to a minimum.