Digital Magazine

PRIMIR Issues Study of UV/EB Curing Technologies


RESTON, VA | PRIMIR, the Print Industries Market Information and Research Organization, the research unit of NPES, announces publication of a new study, "UV/EB Curing Technologies in Printing." The research, conducted for PRIMIR by I.T. Strategies, looks at the North American market for UV/EB printing applications. The study provides an overview of energy-curing technologies, sizing of each market segment, technology drivers, and growth rates along with implications for graphic communications firms.

"In 2012 about 15% of all printing equipment and supplies expenditures were spent on energy-curing ink technology,” says Steve Metcalf, president and CEO of Air Motion Systems|AMS UV, who served as co-chair of the PRIMIR task force guiding this effort. “This PRIMIR study was commissioned to provide clarity and focus on the energy-curing print market, and to identify major barriers and opportunities, such as LED UV, for further adoption."

According to the study, commercial printers are still in the early stages of acceptance of UV-curable technology. Printers interviewed cited that UV systems are too expensive and there is not a clear return-on-investment. While print providers still find it difficult to invest due to ongoing price pressure and overcapacity issues, productivity and efficiency benefits from energy-curing ink systems are tangible. Reportedly, printers and converters who have adopted the technology are seeing an ROI, often within one year of installation and do not foresee going forward without it.

The PRIMIR study projects in North America a 2.5% or greater combined growth rate for energy-curing print equipment and consumables manufacturers through 2017. Growth for units (equipment, plates, etc.) may vary as some average selling prices decline (inkjet systems) and some increase (flexographic presses).

The study concludes that further adoption of energy-curing technologies in the printing industry is highly dependent upon manufacturers in the energy-curing industry collectively devising strategies to raise awareness, educate print providers and packaging converters, and market the advantages of energy-curing inks. In addition to productivity and efficiency benefits for print providers, customer brand owners benefit from consistent quality and a more vibrant final product.

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