What will be the opportunities and threats for the printing industry in 2018?
In the digital era, there are so much to consider when we start thinking about what 2018 can bring to the printing industry.
The Printing Report team wanted to bring this insight to you, and that’s why we’ve scattered some of the interviews made by a range of industry experts in Print Week, trying to find out what will be the most significant opportunities and threats for the paper and printing industry for the new year.
So, here’s the summary of the most thought-provoking to inspire your plans and activities in 2018.
Gary White, MD of online printing business Northside Graphics, predicted that the 2018 trend that would offer the most opportunities for the printing industry is “coopetition”. He argued working with competitors to leverage each other’s specializations isn’t something to be afraid of and can open the door to new commercial opportunities.
On the other hand, President of the British Printing Industries Federation, Darren Coxon, argued that the biggest opportunity in 2018 lies in training and developing people, but saw a threat on the horizon thanks to a downsize in magazine printing at the same time as an increase in the cost of paper and consumables.
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Louisa Bull, Graphical, Paper, Media and IT Sector national officer at UK workers’ union Unite, also saw opportunities in upskilling but said the biggest challenge the industry faces in 2018 is the continued migration of content to digital platforms.
Peter Bradley from printers the Bradly Group echoed Gary White’s call for greater collaboration across the industry. He suggested the biggest challenge for the industry in 2018 will be the further consolidation of the sector.
MD from the printing group Eclipse, Simon Moore, argued that the printing industry should be more vocal in promoting the value of print. In today’s world of digital overload, the benefits of print in capturing audience attention should be used more by brands and businesses.
CEO of Gemini Print Group, Steve Cropper, argued that printers need to stop approaching the market as they would a battlefield. Instead, he called for printers to work together to protect margins. He also expressed concerns over the impact of Brexit on the UK printing industry.
Kevin Creechan, MD of J Thomson Colour Printers, saw huge opportunities in LED UV technology and ink-jet and asked why the sector is so poor at self-marketing. He saw overcapacity and price wars as the major challenges within the industry and feared these forces could punish those firms that do invest in innovative solutions.
“Coopetition,” “collaboration” and “more promotion of the value of print“, seem to be the opportunities keywords for the printing industry during 2018.
On the other hand, price wars and the growth of content digital platforms continue to be two of the major concerns for this year.
One thing is for sure, it will be a challenging year where with no question, the industry will continue to reinvent itself and adapt and adjust to the new consumer’s reality.
2018 will definitely be, at least, an exciting year!