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 user 2008-04-07 at 11:35:43 am Views: 61
  • #19368

    SMBs in India to Spend US$1.3B on Printers & Printing Supplies in 2008
    The growth in printer spending is being spearheaded by vertical-specific and need-specific printer usage, says AMI study
    India–april 08/Small and medium businesses (up to 999 employees) in
    India are on track to spend US$1.3 billion on printers and printing
    supplies this year, up a healthy 16% over last year. Over three fourths
    of this spending comes from small businesses (SBs, or companies with up
    to 99 employees) according to the latest study by New York-based Access
    Markets International (AMI) Partners, Inc.“Increasing competition and
    globalization has forced SMBs to become more quality conscious,” says
    Swati Sasmal, Senior Manager for Research & Consultancy at AMI
    Partners, “which has resulted in increased focus on their quality of
    print outputs and printer usage. High-end printers like lasers are a
    key trend that can be highlighted as a result of this quality-conscious

    But greater laser printer usage by SMBs has hurt the
    inkjet. AMI findings reveal that around two thirds of SBs and half of
    MBs use laser printers. Some factors driving laser printer use are
    increased levels of networking and networked printers among India SMBs,
    and the gradual drop in laser printer prices—resulting in a reduction
    of the price differential with inkjets.“The retail and healthcare
    segments are driving printer spending in India,” Ms. Sasmal says. “This
    explains the rise in vertical-specific and need-specific printer usage,
    for instance POS-based printers (for retail), and label & barcode
    printers (for manufacturing/ logistics).” Some of the applications of
    printers in the healthcare arena include patient wristbands during
    admission, marking of samples, and billing.An interesting trend has
    been the growth of thermal printers. This has been driven mainly by the
    overall growth of retail and rapidly increasing customer footfall
    within the retail segment. A need for high-speed POS/bill printers that
    can enable better customer servicing and reduce waiting times has
    spurred thermal printer usage. Low-cost imports of thermal printers
    from neighboring countries are also adding to the growth and usage of
    thermal printers.Although more SMBs are using new generation printers,
    the dot-matrix printer still remains an important component within the
    overall India SMB printer market and accounts for a significant share
    of total printer shipments. However, this market is anticipated to
    remain stagnant and show a sluggish growth in the near future.
    Single-function printer usage is on the wane—SMBs are preferring
    multi-function/all-in-ones due to their increased versatility at an
    affordable cost.Although nearly 60% of Indian SMBs purchase new,
    original manufacturer-branded cartridges, a significant proportion
    still use refilled or re-manufactured cartridges. The retail channel
    remains the preferred mode for printer supply replenishment for SBs—as
    mentioned by 45% of SBs, whereas value-added resellers are preferred by
    the MBs (or companies between 100 and 999 staff). The local printer
    supply vendor is a vital influencer and often acts as a valuable source
    of advice and information regarding choice of nature and brand of
    printers—this is applicable mainly for SBs.

    continues to lead the market in the Indian SMB printer space. Its wide
    range of products in both the mono and color categories has helped it
    to maintain the market leadership. Other players like Epson, Samsung,
    and Canon are behind market leader HP, but are gradually gaining market
    share. Further, new foreign players like Brother and Ricoh, with their
    aggressive marketing plans, may pose a challenge for the market
    leaders. The focus of most printer vendors has gradually shifted from
    metros to “B & C class” cities thus boosting the growth of printers
    in these areas.