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  • 13 Sep 2018

Labelexpo India hosts successful overseas forums in Sri Lanka and Bangladesh

The Labelexpo India 2018 forum in Colombo, Sri Lanka, was the first of seven being staged ahead of the show, and the first of its kind to be staged overseas

Labelexpo Global Series, the organizer of Labelexpo India, has hosted successful forum events in Colombo, Sri Lanka and Dhaka, Bangladesh, as part of efforts to reach out to offset printers who are thinking about diversifying their businesses into label and package printing.

A series of evening forums are being staged across South Asia during late August to late October in conjunction with several industry trade bodies representing the package printing industry. Held in India, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh, the Colombo event was the first of seven such events.

The event in Colombo on August 24 attracted 75 attendees from both the offset printer and label converter communities. It was staged in collaboration with the Sri Lanka Association of Printers.

Giving the inaugural speech at that event, Pradeep Saroha, event manager of Labelexpo India, noted that labels and package printing is the highest growing sector in print with market size estimated at around US$115 billion by the end of 2018. ‘With commercial print in decline, we must start exploring opportunities in the labels and package printing market,’ he said.

In his presentation, Saroha shared some interesting facts about the global packaging market and explained how commercial printers are switching to label printing. He said that in North America, the flexible packaging market is worth US$23.5 billion, which accounts for 23 percent of the global market. The trend observed in North America is that commercial printers are making the switch to labels. In Latin America, Mexico has seen about 300 to 500 new label companies coming up in the last decade.

Saroha said that Southeast Asia is one of the fastest growing regions for label and package printing with a very young population and this is driving growth in the labels industry through increased consumption of FMCG products. As for South Asia, Saroha said that it has a huge potential for growth, especially if one considers how the flexible packaging market in India is growing at around 15-17 percent per annum.

Mahan Hazarika, editor of The Packman, presented a case study on Delhi-based Kwality Offset Printers, a specialist manufacturer of wet-glue and self-adhesive labels. When it was established in 1972, the company produced cartons and cups for the ice cream industry using letterpress machinery. A decade later it installed an offset press and entered the label printing business, producing beer labels. ‘Since then the company has added flexo and digital technologies to its existing offset unit,’ noted Hazarika. ‘And all the three technologies are currently being used at its plant to produce a wide range of labels to cater to various customer needs.’

Kishore Kumar PS of NBG Printographic Machinery Company, like Saroha, stressed that labels can be the next destination of a commercial printer to diversify. Kumar said: ‘The most widely used labels are pressure-sensitive grades, mostly web-fed, which accounted for 64.6 percent of the market value in 2014, and 51.4 percent of the print volume.’

Rajesh Gandhi of Fujifilm Sericol gave a presentation on pressure-sensitive labels and why one should switch to pressure-sensitive labels. Gandhi said: ‘Back in the 1970s, only about five percent of all global labels were pressure-sensitive labels while they represent approximately 65 percent of the market share today. However, if you look at the beverage label market from a global perspective – less than 15 percent of all labels are pressure-sensitive, with the majority still being glue applied labels, mostly made from paper. Hence, there is a lot of room for growth in this segment.’

Another speaker, Manish Kapoor of Nilpeter, explained how a narrow web press can make a converter feel like a magician. Kapoor said: ‘Just by adding a few additional features on your narrow web press, you can print both wine labels and shrink labels on the same press.’

Saroha said: ‘We are very happy with the success of our very first forum outside India, which provided an extremely valuable insight into this year’s Labelexpo India. Attendee demand exceeded expectations and we have experienced a surge in enquiries from offset printers about attending Labelexpo India since the event. The themes explored at the forum will all be in evidence at this year’s Labelexpo India, which is set to be our biggest yet, with more exhibitors than ever before.’

Since the Colombo event, Labelexpo Global Series has hosted a forum in Dhaka, Bangladesh, which attracted 170 attendees and generated strong interest in Labelexpo India 2018 and the potential for offset printers to move into label and package printing.

Further forums are scheduled for:  

  • Friday, October 5 – Rajkot, Gujarat, India, in partnership with Rajkot Printing & Packaging Association;
  • Saturday, October 6 – Ahmedabad, Gujarat, India, in partnership with Ahmedabad Printing Press Association (APPA);
  • Saturday, October 13 – Kochin, Kerala, India, in partnership with Kerala Master Printers Association (KMPA);
  • Saturday, October 20 – Jammu, Jammu & Kashmir, India, in partnership with J&K Offset Printers Association (JKOPA); and
  • Friday, October 26 – Pune, Maharashtra, India, in partnership with Poona Press Owners Association (PPOA).

‘We look forward to meeting members of the offset printer community at our other forums taking place across the region in the run-up to the show, and we would encourage interested delegates to register as soon as possible to avoid disappointment,’ concluded Saroha.

Labelexpo India 2018 will be held at the India Expo Centre in Greater Noida, Delhi from November 22-25.

Labelexpo India hosted a series of successful roadshows prior to the previous event in 2016, which also looked to attract offset printers to the show; read more here 

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