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Study Says Equipment Shipments Will be Down, Opportunity for Printers

Press release from the issuing company

GATF’s Annual Technology Forecast Released at Tech Alert Conference Pittsburgh, Pa., February 19, 2002 — "We expect the total value of printing equipment shipments in 2001 to be 7.5 percent lower than in 2000," writes Regis J. Delmontagne, president, NPES The Association for Suppliers of Printing, Publishing and Converting Technologies, in the 2002 GATF Technology Forecast. This translates into "It’s a buyer’s market and now is the time to buy that new press" according to Ray Prince, senior technical consultant for the Graphic Arts Technical Foundation (GATF), who presented a summary of the new publication at GATF’s recent Tech Alert conference. One of GATF’s most popular publications, the annual Technology Forecast helps readers identify trends that will affect specific business segments and adapt to survive the next five or ten years. It draws from many sources to provide a comprehensive yet concise range of perspectives on industry and technology trends for the coming year. Not only GATF staff, but also association executives, industry experts, and educators have contributed 69 articles to this year’s Technology Forecast—the largest in its 20-year history. Divided into three sections, the first section examines the industry on a macro level. In this section, experts at PIA, NAPL, NPES and elsewhere contributed articles on economic trends—all foretelling an economic rebound for the industry in 2002. The wide-ranging coverage of printing markets alerts readers to what is on the horizon in digital, quick, catalog, newspaper, magazine, book, packaging, and finishing and postpress markets. Status reports on e-commerce and international markets (Canada, Latin America, and Europe) are also included. The second section, The Print Production Process, updates readers on more specific issues. The section includes 14 articles on prepress operations and digital issues; eight articles on print and press processes; three on postpress; and three on supplies and materials. The last section, Supporting the Process, covers education and training, standards and specifications, and environmental issues. In this section, Larry Kroll, vice president, consulting & training, Print Media Academy, Heidelberg USA, writes, "Buying new equipment must be coupled with education of employees." That users are not fully benefiting from the advanced technology offered is a theme that runs throughout the publication. "It isn’t enough to buy a press that’s 25 percent more productive if you’re going to settle for a 10 percent gain. That shortfall is almost entirely missed profits," says Delmontagne in his article. Ken Lowden, marketing and industry relations manager, DuPont Imaging Technologies, echoes, "Regardless which proofing technology you choose, the accuracy, consistency, and calibration of the device is still important, unless of course ‘good enough’ is the buying parameter." Such commentaries may also provide readers of the Technology Forecast with new perspectives on their operations. A valuable summary of the year to come, a complimentary copy of the 2002 GATF Technology Forecast has been mailed to the primary representative at each GATF/PIA member company. Other printers, publishers, designers, and graphic communications professionals are urged to seek out this 120-page, must-read report. It is available for $199 ($99 for GATF/PIA members) plus shipping. Indicate Order No. 480421. Orders may be placed by contacting GATF by phone at 800/662-3916 (U.S. and Canada) or 412/741-5733 (all other countries); fax at 412/741-0609; or online from the GAIN Bookstore. Mail orders to GATF Products, P.O. Box 1020, Sewickley, PA 15143-1020.