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Agfa and Xaar Announce Strategic Agreement for Next-Generation Inkjet Printheads

Press release from the issuing company

Mortsel, Belgium – 17 March 2004 – Agfa and Xaar today announced a strategic agreement for joint research, development and manufacturing of next-generation inkjet printheads. The agreement covers a five-year period and will give Agfa access to innovative inkjet technology for new applications in commercial, package and newspaper printing. Agfa and Xaar have co-operated to jointly develop and manufacture a new range of high-specification printheads, which are capable of meeting various application requirements. This joint development has now resulted in a new generation of printheads that will be previewed at Drupa 2004 (May 6-19) in Dusseldorf, Germany. The new agreement is evidence of a shared commitment to continue a long-term co-operation for the development of innovative inkjet technology. The new printheads will be manufactured at Xaar's plant in Jarfalla, Sweden, and both companies will have the right to sell the new printheads into their respective markets. To support the expected production volumes and increase the capacity of certain key processes, Agfa has invested more than 2.5 million € in new equipment at the Xaar facility. The new printheads will include both binary and greyscale versions, with a choice of either 382 or 764 firing channels. Ink droplet size will vary from 80 pico litres for high-productivity and high-coverage applications, down to 3 pico litres for high-resolution and high-quality applications. "This agreement shows Agfa's focus on innovations to support the Power of Print. It is evidence of our belief that inkjet is the technology of choice for real-life digital printing applications. We are combining expertise from our own R&D as well as selected partners to further our total solutions approach to prepress and printing," said Agfa's vice-president of Imaging Solutions, Jan Van Daele. "The inkjet market is one of the most promising in our industry, and we are determined to gain a leadership position." "In co-operation with Agfa, the development of the second-generation printheads has made significant progress during the year," said Xaar's Chief Executive Officer Ian Dinwoodle. "These printheads are the most sophisticated products yet developed by Xaar and represent a major step-change in inkjet performance with significantly improved accuracy and resolution." Agfa's solutions and services can be found at Drupa 2004's PrintCity in Hall 06/D27. Xaar can be found at Drupa in Hall 7/C27.