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I. T. Strategies Profiles Users of Inkjet Digital Flatbeds

Press release from the issuing company

Hanover, MA…June 4, 2003… I. T. Strategies recently profiled 32 companies that have installed ink jet flatbed printers (an estimated 13% of the installed base). The purpose of the research was to collect basic data on these companies to see if certain trends were revealed. They were: • Two types of companies are buying digital flatbed printers: 1) Specialists -- those that offer a variety of products and services but focus on one particular market segment or application such as POP and, 2) Generalists -- companies that offer a variety of products and services to a range of customers. • It’s all about POP advertising. The application focus of 75% of companies profiled is POP. Who’s Buying • Generalists employ a number of printing technologies and call themselves by a number of different names such as a digital print shop, a commercial imaging center, a visual solutions company, large format graphics specialists, even screen printer. These companies generally provide a range of products including POP, trade show graphics, vehicle wraps and documents to a wide variety of customers including retailers, ad agencies, corporations. In the graphic below only companies that call themselves digital print shops are included under that category. Others are listed under “Other.” • Specialists have an application focus and call themselves POP Specialists, Visual Merchandising Specialists, Exhibit Specialists, etc. They employ a variety of printing technologies to serve customers in specific areas such as POP. In addition to printing these companies offer services such as concept design, installation, and distribution to their customers. What Are They Doing The primary application focus of almost 75% of the companies profiled is POP, in-store advertising signage. Almost 30% of the companies profiled for this report call themselves POP specialists (or some variation of) and focus specifically on POP customers. A great percentage of the generalist print companies profiled (companies that serve a number of markets and applications) list POP as their primary application. According to Mark Hanley, President of I.T. Strategies, “Digital flatbeds are definitely an important product format. People have said that digital flatbed printers would be the answer to penetrating the screen printing market because of the familiarity of the product format. But interestingly, it turns out that digital flatbeds are adding functionality to companies with flexo, offset, photo and digital printing capabilities. The focus is not on a product format but rather on an application –POP -- where digital flatbeds have the ability to cut out conversion steps in an application which uses so much rigid substrates as final products.”