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 user 2008-05-30 at 2:36:20 pm Views: 40
  • #20047
    HP sees 2008 printer unit sales up 4-6 percent
    , 2008 DUESSELDORF, Germany – Hewlett-Packard the world’s biggest maker
    of PCs and printers, sees sales growth at its imaging and printing unit
    stable or slightly lower this year as it focuses on its digital
    graphics business.Vyometh Joshi, executive vice president in charge of
    the unit, told Reuters on Friday he also aimed for an operating margin
    of 13-15 percent this year and next, compared with 15 percent last
    fiscal year to end-October.”We would like to grow our business 4 to 6
    percent in revenues and make 13 to 15 percent operating profit,” Joshi
    said in an interview at the Drupa print media trade fair in
    Duesseldorf, Germany.

    Sales at HP’s imaging and printing unit grew 6 percent last fiscal year.
    whether the targets were for the current fiscal year, Joshi answered:
    “Yes, for next year also.”HP’s imaging and printing unit made sales of
    $28.5 billion last year — about a quarter of the company’s total
    revenues — but almost half of HP’s operating profit.The unit is helped
    by a lucrative business in printer cartridges which customers must keep
    buying to keep their HP printers running.Joshi said, however, he saw
    the future in digital graphics, which had now caught up to an
    acceptable extent with analogue printing methods in cost and quality,
    if not yet in speed.In its favor, digital printing is far more
    flexible, and so more cost-efficient for smaller print runs, Joshi
    said. For example, changing details for a printed label could take
    months using analogue, compared with days for digital.Although HP has
    46 percent global market share in printers, Joshi said, it accounted
    for just 1.6 percent of the 50 trillion pages printed worldwide last
    year, a $781 billion market, because more than 90 percent still used
    analogue methods.”Instead of focusing just on the printers, we are
    focusing now on the pages. That’s how we can continue to grow,” he said.

    estimates the value of pages printed in the global graphic arts market
    will be $663 billion by 2010.After the digitalization of music and
    photos, which are already well advanced, labels, marketing materials
    and books will follow in the next few years, Joshi predicted.He
    referred to Google’s ambitious project to scan all the world’s books
    that are out of copyright, which has already gathered digital versions
    of more than a million books.”If you want to get a book that’s out of
    print, digital is the way to do it, because you only print one copy,”
    he said.

    HP has made several acquisitions in the graphic arts
    field in the last few years, including most recently that of Israel’s
    NUR Macroprinters in March for $118 million.Joshi spoke to Reuters as
    HP showed a new digital printing press for the first time at the Drupa
    fair, which is due to come to market in the second half of next
    year.The Inkjet Web Press is aimed mainly at medium-sized to large
    providers of print services and could revolutionize the way that local
    newspapers, for example, are printed, he said.Instead of relying on the
    huge printing presses owned by media groups such as News Corp. , local
    papers could own their own production or go to smaller, closer-by
    providers.Product manager Mike Neuffer said the target price for the
    Inkjet Web Press was around $2.5 million to $3 million, although no
    prices had yet been set.The press can print at rates of up to 122
    meters per minute, HP says. Joshi said this was about half the speed
    analogue alternatives can produce.Neuffer said such printing presses
    could also be useful for national or international newspapers for
    regional print and distribution purposes.