22 September 2010
Agfa welcomes industry members to new digs
MISSISSAUGA, ON—Agfa Graphics welcomed about 100 print industry members to its new-ish facility in Mississauga yesterday for an open house featuring presentations on the specialty graphics industry, the evolution of social media as a marketing tool, and the rise of inkjet as both a specialty and mainstream print technology.

The 160,000 sq. ft. building is the former Gandinnovations location. Agfa purchased the Canadian wide-format inkjet manufacturer in 2009 and moved into the Gandinnovations building last April.

Dan Marx, vice-president of marketing and technology for the U.S.-based specialty graphics association SGIA, kicked off the presentations with an overview of the dramatic changes in that part of the industry, traditionally comprised of screen printers. In its latest member survey, only 1% of members are pure screen printers, with the largest number, 55%, having a mix of production technologies. The remaining 44% are digital-only shops.

Marx also unveiled key results from SGIA’s latest industry financial outlook and business plans survey (see chart below on growth areas).

Julian Mills, vice-president of digital marketing firm Prescient Digital Media, laid out the case for printers to adopt social media such as LinkedIn and Twitter as key marketing and sales tools. He was followed by Agfa’s Lawrence Robinson, graphic systems, who outlined the growth of Agfa and the inkjet market.

Dan Deveau of Cameron Advertising Displays, Dan Marx of SGIA and Julian Mills of Prescient Digital Media

The day ended with a video and presentation from Dan Deveau, vice-president of Cameron Advertising Displays, a large Toronto screen printer that became the first shop in North America to install Agfa’s :M-Tiger industrial flatbed inkjet press earlier this year.

Growth Products for Specialty Graphics Producers:

Building Wraps 58.1%
Environmental Graphics 58.0%
Indoor Wall Graphics    56.8%
Point of Sale/POP 51.4%
Vehicle Graphics 49.5%
Floor Graphics 48.9%
Banners 46.8%
Window Displays 45.7%
Building Graphics 45.7%
Architectural Wayfinding  40.3%
Source: SGIA 2010 Financial Outlook and Business Plans Survey

Lupina Mancuso and Lawrence Robinson of Agfa Graphics

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