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The changing nature of the North American ink industry.

Since its debut in 1995, the U.S. Top 20 Report has been a fixture at Ink World. The most comprehensive report of its kind, the Top 20 and Companies to Watch reports provide a tremendous amount of information on what is happening at the leading ink manufacturers, and what we expect to see in the coming years.

This year, we have changed the Top 20 Report to reflect the changes in the marketplace. Rather than simply concentrate on the U.S., our new North American Top 20 Report more accurately reflects the changes that have occurred in this region. For example, many of the leading international ink manufacturers are organized into geographic divisions, with North America as one division. The acquisition of Micro Inks by Huber Group and subsequent merger into Toronto, Canada-based Hostmann-Steinberg is another example, as was Wikoff Color's acquisition of Frontier Printing Inks. Meanwhile, many of the leading ink manufacturers are actively pursuing business in Canada and Mexico. With all of this in mind, it was a natural decision to create the North American Top 20 Report.

The North American Top 20 and Companies to Watch reports are the result of interviews with industry leaders and information gathered throughout the year. I am extremely grateful for the assistance and openness of our industry's leaders, whose generous help makes our report unique.

Through these reports, Ink World readers can access the latest, most accurate information on what is happening at our industry's top companies, and gain insight into the industry in general. It is our sincerest hope that our readers will be able to benefit from our U.S. Top 20 Report and Companies to Watch.

David Savastano

Ink World Editor

The North American Top 20 Rankings





PHONE: (973) 404-6000

FAX: (973) 404-6001



MAJOR PRODUCTS: Broad product portfolio with capabilities in web heatset and sheetfed offset; publication and packaging gravure; news ink and publication coldset; flexographic packaging inks; corrugated packaging inks; energy curable inks and coatings; screen inks, label and narrow web inks, toner, inkjet materials, adhesives for packaging, overprint varnishes, specialty coatings, effect inks, security inks and coatings, and organic colorants for inks, plastics, paints, coatings and cosmetics.

KEY PERSONNEL: Dr. David C. Hill, president and CEO, and in alphabetical order:

Gary Andrzejewski, corporate VP, environmental affairs; Dr. Cynthia Arnold, chief technology officer; Martin Cellerier, director of strategic planning, Sun Chemical Europe; Melvin M. Cox, senior VP, general counsel and corporate secretary; Stuart Foster, VP, operations, North American Inks; John Gowlett, corporate VP, European Operations; John Law, general manager, Sun Jet; Greg Lawson, group president, US Ink, Commercial and Publication Inks; Brian Leen, corporate VP and general manager, Performance Pigments; Rudi Lenz, senior VP and chief financial officer; Mark Levin, president, North American Commercial Group; Ed Lovas, VP and controller; John Luppino, general manager, Sun Chemical Security; Richard Martin, global managing director, Coates Screen & Electrographics; John L. McKeown, senior VP, human resources; David Meldram, senior VP and president, European Inks; Felipe Mellado, corporate VP, marketing, Sun Chemical Europe; Charles Murray, corporate VP and group managing director, Sun Chemical Europe; Carlo Musso, group managing director, Sun Chemical Europe; Chris Parrilli, president, North American Publication Inks; Richard Pettifor, president, North American Packaging Inks; Ulrike Pfeffermann, chief information officer; Edward Pruitt, chief procurement officer; Brad Schrader, chief marketing officer.

NUMBER OF EMPLOYEES: Approximately 11,000 worldwide.

OPERATING FACILITIES: Sun Chemical has more than 300 manufacturing and service locations worldwide and more than 200 customer inplant locations in the U.S. alone.

COMMENTS: In general, the printing industry enjoyed its best year in recent memory in 2006, and as a result, Sun Chemical also had an improved year, according to Dr. David Hill, president and CEO.

"The printing industry had its best year since 2000, and that lifted the ink industry, too," Dr. Hill said. However, he pointed out that the improvements for printing were not universal, as some segments saw actual declines during the year.

"The North American market is quite mature now. Still, Sun Chemical saw growth in several areas, but especially in packaging," Dr. Hill said, adding that overseas there was considerable growth in emerging markets such as Eastern Europe and Latin America. "While production in areas such as paper packaging and book printing continues to grow offshore at the expense of North American printers, Sun Chemical is poised to keep its share in these segments by being able to supply the market in locales outside North America."

The packaging segment has shown the most growth in 2006, especially in flexible packaging and rigid plastic packaging. Print-on-demand continues to gain market share, according to Dr. Hill, and increasingly is displacing conventional screen and offset printing. Toner-based printing is becoming increasingly competitive with offset for targeted marketing. Meanwhile, inkjet printing continues to grow rapidly in the large-format segment.

Publication and commercial printing continue to show a decline year over year. Sun Chemical has seen higher growth rates in emerging markets such as Eastern Europe and Latin America.

Business does seem to be turning upwards, but threats remain due to a forecast of sluggish growth in the U.S. economy, rising material costs and threats from new media. "Consequently, it appears that for the next few years, growth in the ink industry will be modest at best. Some weaker players may be forced out of the market, and consolidation is likely to continue," Dr. Hill said.

Dr. Hill also added that ink makers were hurt by raw material prices that continued to spiral higher well into 2006 before some stability seemed to settle in near year end.

"While ink makers may have been able to gain some price increases in 2006, they were more than offset by higher raw material and freight prices," he said. "Sun Chemical continues to hone its purchasing and logistic work to keep itself one of the low-cost suppliers of ink. Yet our customers can rest assured that we will be able to supply them, even when some ink components become difficult to source."

The ink industry continued to see merger and acquisition activity, primarily due to overcapacity in the market. For Sun Chemical, however, its primary acquisition in 2006 was not directly related to inks. Sun Chemical Group purchased Envoy Communications Group Incorporated's UK subsidiaries: ECG Holdings (UK) Limited, Watt Gilchrist Limited and Parker Williams Design Limited. The agreed sale price is CAD $27 million.

Watt Gilchrist, headquartered in Leeds, UK, is one of the leading graphic arts companies in the UK, while London-based Parker Williams is one the leading packaging design and brand development firms in the UK. The acquisition will enable Sun Chemical to better serve its customers in the areas of packaging development and color management and will also create new opportunities for Watt Gilchrist and Parker Williams. The acquisition includes the ODIN packaging and digital asset management system.

Sun Chemical also announced the sale of most of its assets in the Sun Graphic press blanket business to Day International. As part of this deal, the Sun Graphic blanket manufacturing facility in Pompano Beach, FL, was closed. However, Sun Chemical will maintain an ongoing distribution agreement with Day for the sale of press blankets through Rycoline, the Sun Chemical North American Commercial and Packaging Groups.

In another highlight, Sun Chemical was named a recipient of the 2006 PIA/GATF InterTech Technology Award for its Liberty sheetfed inks, an environmentally-friendly ink technology designed to produce outstanding print while reducing waste and dramatically shortening printers' production time. The prestigious InterTech Technology Awards are announced annually by the Printing Industries of America/Graphic Arts Technical Foundation. Winners are chosen based on innovative technology likely to have a significant impact on the printing industry. Liberty utilizes proprietary chemistry to create inks that offer superb press stability and ultra-fast drying, which together can yield substantial savings for printers.

Sun Chemical began implementation of a new SAP Enterprise Resource Planning system, which integrates all manufacturing, accounting and ordering applications for the entire enterprise. The system was first introduced in Canada late in 2006 and rolled out in the U.S. early in 2007. Further introductions of the SAP system are planned in business units worldwide during the remainder of 2007. Sun Chemical also launched a centralized customer service center, located in Cincinnati, OH, as part of its effort to continue offering outstanding service to its customers.

During 2006, Sun Chemical also announced the appointments of several key executives. Greg Lawson was named to lead Sun Chemical's publication and commercial ink businesses in North America, in addition to his role as president of US Ink, Sun Chemical's news ink division. He was named to the US Ink position early in 2006.

Brad Schrader was appointed chief marketing officer, building world class marketing capabilities to support Sun Chemical's sales and margin growth objectives through strategies, plans, training, tools, processes and benchmarking.

Jim Cunningham was named president, Sun Chemical Latin America, responsible for all aspects of the Latin American business, including sales, marketing, manufacturing and other operational activities in Latin America and the Caribbean.

Ulrike Pfeffermann was appointed chief information officer, responsible for implementation of the SAP system, shared services and Sun Chemical's global IT function,

Edward Pruitt joined Sun Chemical as chief procurement officer, leading the global procurement function as Sun Chemical strives to contain rapidly escalating raw material costs.

In February 2006, Sun Chemical announced that Ron Baker, longtime president of US Ink, died after a distinguished career in the ink industry spanning more than 50 years.

Sun Chemical continues to invest more than any other ink company in the research and development of innovative products. Some of these introduced in 2006 include Triton, a new set of four-color process inks for heat-set web printing that utilizes unique chemistry for improved color control, reduced misting, a 15 percent to 20 percent reduction in VOCs and less dependency on petroleum derivates.

In Europe, Sun Chemical has launched EOS, a new series of four-color, sheetfed offset inks that offer fast conversion and work-and-turn (depending on substrate) to boost productivity, and IROCART, an ink system for conventional sheetfed offset printing of packaging. IROCART includes a range of duct-fresh sheetfed inks that dry by penetration and oxidation. These inks have low taint, low odor and low migration characteristics for packaging of sensitive foods. They can be matched with UltraCure coatings and overprint varnishes, with gloss, matte and special effect finishes.

Sun Chemical formulated and produced WideStar inks in South America to meet local requirements. These offset inks feature excellent transfer and ink-water balance, with stability needed for high-speed printing on a variety of substrates and press types.

For the growing flexible packaging market, Sun Chemical's newest offerings include WetFlex, a patented flexo printing process for flexible packaging utilizing Sun Chemical's UniQure inks, which are wet-trapped on a common impression cylinder press and cured instantly by an in-line electron beam. Duratort, a new one-part retort ink system, gives printers the options to capitalize on the fast-growing retort packaging market. It can be used to print retort packaging, either gravure or flexo, while offering high bond strengths and heat and temperature resistance.

Sun Chemical has launched the Streamline inks in the North American after-market for wide-format digital printing. These solvent and water-based inks can be used for digital proofing, P-O-P signs, murals, banners, vehicle graphics and outdoor display applications on digital printing devices from most major manufacturers.

While Dr. Hill believes that 2007 might be a decent year for the ink industry, there are fundamental changes that will impact printers and ink makers alike.

"If economic conditions continue to be favorable for 2007, ink makers should be able to see a decent year that might allow them to improve their sales and margins, albeit with mixed results in some segments," Dr. Hill said. "Potential pitfalls--such as a spike in oil prices or continued political unrest--could disrupt the growth curve. Longer term, trends in new media and offshore growth in printing are likely to have a negative effect on mass media like newspapers, magazines and books."

He said these factors likely add up to continued declines for sheetfed and publication printers, while other segments employing digital printing for direct marketing and new packaging techniques such as stand-up pouches and retort are likely to flourish. Some package converting is being lost to offshore operations in countries where durable goods are being manufactured for export to the U.S. Also, some of these developing countries are seeing considerable growth in printed products due to their own increasing domestic consumption.

"We probably haven't seen the end of consolidation among printers and ink makers," Dr. Hill added. "The huge overcapacity in both industries in North America and Western Europe hurts their ability to compete on anything other than low-cost pricing. Removing some of this capacity would position the industries for improved profitability."





PLYMOUTH, MI 48170-7194

PHONE: (734) 781-4600

FAX: (734) 781-4699



MAJOR PRODUCTS: Cold and heatset web offset, sheetfed offset, flexographic, gravure, UV/EB inks and coatings for publication, news, package and commercial applications. A wide range of inks for narrow web tag and label applications. Photopolymer plates for flexographic, gravure and letterpress applications. Dry, flushed and presscake pigments, aqueous dispersions varnishes and additives for the colorant market.

KEY PERSONNEL: Howard Poulson, non-executive chairman; Leonard D. (Dave) Frescoln, CEO; Michael J. Gannon, president and COO; Michael J. Bissell, executive VP and CFO; Dr. Dirk Aulbert, president, Flint Group Europe; Bill Miller, president, Flint Group North America; Damian Johnson, president, Flint Group India/Pacific; Jerko E. Rendic, president, Flint Group Latin America; Henry Leong, president, Flint Group Asia; Ewald Draaijer, president, XSYS Print Solutions (narrow web inks); Dr. Thomas Telser, president, Flint Group Printing Plates; Craig Foster, president, Flint Group Pigments; Ron S. Muawad, VP, corporate controller; Rita A. Conrad, VP, corporate communications.

NUMBER OF EMPLOYEES: Approximately 7,000 worldwide.

COMMENTS: 2006 was an excellent year for Flint Group. Overall, the company enjoyed improved earnings, and anticipates similar growth in 2007. Raw materials prices continued to spiral upward, finally showing some stabilization toward the end of the year, and the company announced a series of price increases across the board. Flint Group opened its second manufacturing center in China, this time a fluid ink plant in Guangzhou, while Jetrion, LLC, a digital ink and equipment company launched in 2003, was sold to EFI.

Higher raw material prices and operational costs continue to impact the ink industry, leading Flint Group to announce price increases on virtually all of its products in North America and Europe throughout the past year.

"For the first time in a very long time, we were successful in implementing price increases, although they did little to offset the raw materials increases," said Dave Frescoln, Flint Group's CEO.

The acquisition of Flint Ink by XSYS Print Solutions in 2005 and the subsequent unification of the companies into Flint Group has resulted in the new company's being either the number one or number two supplier in every region it serves. Now that the integration of Flint Group is nearly complete, the new group is in a position to take full advantage of the synergies, such as global capabilities and local service, best practice implementation and consolidated procurement.

"The majority of integration activities following the union of XSYS Print Solutions and Flint Ink have been completed, and attention is focusing on building our business in each of the regions and products areas we serve," Mr. Frescoln said. "The consolidation has allowed us to streamline operations and product lines while increasing the overall portfolio of products we can deliver to our customers. The additional size and global structure are also of benefit at a time when the industry is both fragmented and undergoing globalization, and customers themselves are becoming more global."

Flint Group recorded strong growth in China, and Latin America also showed increasing strength. The completion of the Guangzhou facility was the primary capital project. The 4,800-square-meter plant, in operation since May 2006, provides packaging and commercial printers with water-and solvent-based inks, UV inks, specialty inks and varnishes. The Guangzhou facility primarily serves China and Southeast Asian markets. With the new facility in place, Flint Group looks forward to reaping the benefits of local service to the growing Chinese packaging market. In another major capital project, Flint Group Printing Plates put its new production plant for flexo plates into operation in Willstatt, Germany. Printing inks for packaging applications are also produced at the new facility.

In an important move, Flint Group sold Jetrion, LLC, the company's inkjet ink and printing system subsidiary, to Electronics for Imaging (EFI) for $40 million.

Mr. Frescoln noted that printers appear to be enjoying improved conditions.

"In general, results were up throughout 2006, an encouraging sign after the last three or four years," Mr. Frescoln said. "We are hopeful it will continue through 2007 and beyond. We have noticed some changes in inventory patterns with our customers which in turn affect us. With the recent price increases, there may have been a tendency to store extra inventory as a hedge, but that can be a costly proposition as well. What we may be seeing now is a leveling out of inventories in the face of what appears to be some pricing stability."

Mr. Frescoln believes that 2007 will be a strong year for Flint Group, although raw material shortages are a serious concern.

"We believe 2007 will continue the upward movement begun in 2006, and results will align with general economic conditions," Mr. Frescoln said. "Raw materials issues, driven by globalization, will continue to be a focus. We are keeping a keen eye out for potential shortages and working proactively to develop alternate materials to forestall the effects of such shortages."





PHONE: (630) 382-1800

FAX: (847) 969-9758



MAJOR PRODUCTS: A full line of ink and coatings solutions technology for packaging, commercial print applications, including metal decorating, flexographic, gravure, web offset, lamination, corrugated, sheetfed, digital and UV/EB inks and coatings.

KEY PERSONNEL: Hiroshi Ota, chairman; Rick Clendenning, president and CEO; Bryce Kristo, CFO, senior VP general affairs; Yasuhiro Hashimoto, CTO, senior VP product development; George Polasik, COO, senior VP operations; Charles Sagert, senior VP, sales; Joseph Cichon, senior VP, manufacturing technology; Charles Weinholzer, senior VP, liquid division; Dave Waller, VP, director national accounts/rigid packaging; Jonathan Ellaby, VP, international division; Janet Beasley, VP, quality systems; Rick Westrom, VP, strategic global sourcing.

NUMBER OF EMPLOYEES: Approximately 1,225.

OPERATING FACILITIES: Approximately 30 locations and 160 in-plants throughout North America. Subsidiaries: INX International U.K., Manchester, England; INX International France, Bretigny, France. Sister company: Triangle Digital INX. Parent company: Sakata Inx, Osaka, Japan.

COMMENTS: INX International Ink Co. had a strong 2006, as price increases throughout the ink industry, combined with its own cost reductions, improved its performance.

"INX had a strong year assisted by the industry-wide price increase and benefiting cost reduction efforts initiated in 2005 and completed in early 2006," said Bryce Kristo, CFO, senior VP general affairs. "Raw material pricing, although increasing, did not have the volatility of the prior year. The price increases along with steady raw material costs have stabilized mar gins while profit improvements came from cost reduction efforts and successful capital investments."

The digital printing market has become the fastest-growing segment, and the agreement between Sakata Inx, INX International's parent company, and California-based Triangle Digital LLC, forming Triangle Digital INX Co. (TDI) in February 2006, gave INX International Ink Co. a strong portfolio in the inkjet market.

Triangle Digital INX specializes in outdoor durable pigment-based superwide and wide format digital inks and protective clear coatings, and is a leading global supplier of inkjet worldwide. There is also great potential in the commercial sheetfed market.

"The addition of Triangle has opened much of the digital market for us and our parent," Mr. Kristo said. "We are actively working together to leverage our resources to succeed in this growing market."

Mr. Kristo noted that INX's customers have seen growth in the past year.

"The majority of our business resides with packaging converters," he said. "Converters are experiencing typical growth tied to consumables. However, certain segments have done better with the entrance of new products and labels."

Sakata Inx is well known for its emphasis on the environment, and INX International Ink Co. has also been playing an active role in a variety of ways that have made it stand out in the industry.

In August, INX International partnered with Mecklenburg County, NC officials by donating its former Charlotte, NC plant and floodprone acreage along Little Sugar Creek to the county for open space and floodplain protection purposes.

"We are pleased to add this new facet to our and (parent company) Sakata Inx' long history of responsible corporate citizenship," said Rick Clendenning, INX International's president and CEO. "This partnership reflects the excellent relations we have enjoyed with the people in this area for many years. And it further demonstrates the benefits of collaboration between business and the community, sharing common goals."

In November, INX International Ink earned the Orion Environmental Stewardship Award presented by Orion Energy Services, for new energy-efficient lighting at its Charlotte, NC, facility. The switch to fluorescent lighting led to a reduction at the INX facility's annual lighting power usage from 533,209 kilowatt-hours (kWh) to 284,439 kWh--a 47 percent saving.

From an environmental perspective, the electric power reduction provides the air-cleaning equivalent of a 52-acre forest, taking 46 cars off the road or saving 23,508 gallons of gasoline per year. And it eliminates 558 tons of airborne pollutants annually.

"While protecting the environment is an ongoing priority with INX," noted Mr. Clendenning, "this is a classic example of how environmental responsibility also makes sound business sense."

The company's new products also have an environmental advantage. At Cannex 2007, INX International featured enhanced products for both 2- and 3-piece metal decorating, including its AP LoVOC Inks for 2-Piece Metal. AP LoVOC is specially formulated for aluminum and coated steel, and offers clearance for environmental issues due to its low VOC content.

In addition, INX introduced its AP Retortable Inks for 2-Piece Metal, which are high gloss thermoset inks that provide superior on-press performance and low misting; and INXCure TP Xcel Base System for 3-Piece Metal, UV curable inks provide excellent adhesion to most clear coatings, including white base as well as color coatings.

"These advanced ink systems reinforce our commitment to this industry," said Mr. Clendenning, "as well as ongoing product development efforts designed to help our customers increase business in growing consumer food and beverage packaging sectors."

The company also introduced its new INX ShrinkPac gravure and Flexo ShrinkPac inks. These inks are ideal for multiple substrates, including OPS, PVC and PETG, thus simplifying turnaround while providing superior adhesion and excellent color development.

New technologies combined with increased investment should be a key to INX International's growth both in 2007 and in the longer term.

"Our new facility in Charlotte is up to full speed and helping drive economies of scale with regards to metal deco ink," Mr. Kristo said. "It is the only state-of-the-art facility dedicated to metal decorating in the world. The introduction of digital ink will provide for steady growing margins in the future. We have also invested in the latest version of mySAP with full implementation in early 2007.

"We feel 2007 will be a year of stability and infusion of strategic resources, both human and capital investment, that should secure longer term prosperity in our core business going forward with some reach into new emerging technologies," Mr. Kristo concluded.




PHONE: (262) 673-1400

FAX: (262) 673-1459



MAJOR PRODUCTS: Offset and gravure inks.

KEY PERSONNEL: Tim Hofstetter, president; Greg Laszewski, general manager--offset; Randy Maas, gravure operations manager; Sunil Rao, technical director.


OPERATING FACILITIES: Lomira, WI; Oklahoma City, OK; Martinsburg, WV; Greenfield, IA; Hartford, WI.

COMMENTS: Quad/Graphics Inc. is a legendary success story in the printing industry. From its beginnings in 1971, Quad/Graphics has become the third-largest printer in the U.S., with sales estimated at more than $2 billion annually. Excelling in publication gravure and heatset, Quad/Graphics is the printer of choice for many of the most prominent publications.

To meet its ink needs, Quad/Graphics formed its Chemical Research/Technology (CR/T) division in 1982. CR/T supplies Quad/Graphics' offset and gravure ink requirements, producing more than 131 million pounds of ink annually. In addition, CR/T's R&D team creates new products that help Quad/Graphics maintain its leadership in the printing industry.

For CR/T, 2006 was a challenging year, as the company continued to face pressure from higher raw material costs. To meet increased demand and reduce the impact of raw material price increases, Quad/Graphics Inc. is expanding its ink production plant in Hartford, WI. The expansion is expected to be completed by September.

"CR/T has begun a series of capital improvement projects to improve overall ink performance and reduce raw material ink cost," said Greg Laszewski, general manager--offset for CR/T. "CR/T Hartford has broken ground on a 35,000 sq.ft. plant expansion to house the pigment dispersion manufacturing operation. This operation will reduce overall costs and improve manufacturing productivity. Additional capital improve Tent projects for gravure are scheduled for 2007 and 2008 to again improve gravure ink quality and improve productivity."

Meanwhile, CR/T's R&D team is also working on new projects that help Quad/Graphics maintain its leadership in the printing industry and enhance the company's success in these challenging times.

"We expect 2007 to be another challenging year with modest growth in both offset and gravure," Mr. Laszewski said. "Beyond 2007 is difficult to predict. The CR/T laboratory under the direction of Sunil Rao is currently working on projects to improve CR\T revenues for 2007 and beyond."




PHONE: (905) 793-9970

FAX: (905) 793-5368




PHONE: (815) 929-9293

FAX: (815) 929-0412



MAJOR PRODUCTS: Heatset, sheetfed, coldset, UV and EB, forms and flexo inks; aqueous and UV coatings; pigments, flushes and resins.

KEY PERSONNEL: Winfried Gleue, president and CEO; Dhaval Nanavati, VP operations; John Griffin, Ed Frois and Kevin McNally, VP sales and marketing; Nathan Mahadevan, CFO.


OPERATIONAL FACILITIES: Mother plants in Kankakee, IL and Toronto, Canada, and 22 branch facilities coast to coast.

COMMENTS: For Hostmann-Steinberg, the North American subsidiary of Munich, Germany-based Huber Group, 2006 was an important milestone, as the company integrated the Micro Inks organization it acquired in October 2005 and also increased sales and profitability.

"We did fairly well in 2006 in both increase of sales and improved profitability," said Winfried Gleue, president and CEO of Hostmann-Steinberg. "The key event in 2006 was certainly the acquisition and integration of the Micro organization."

For the Huber Group, acquiring Micro Inks gave the company access to critical raw materials such as pigments, flushes and resins. Mr. Gleue said that access is paying off for Hostmann-Steinberg and its customers.

"The driving factor for the acquisition of Micro was the backward integration into vital raw materials such as pigments, flushes and resins," Mr. Gleue noted. "We made a major step in that respect and our customers will certainly benefit from that in the long run."

Even with the backward integration into Micro Inks, Hostmann-Steinberg faced rising raw material and operational costs, which necessitated raising its own prices to customers.

"Increasing raw material costs have been a problem for us just like probably any other ink manufacturer," Mr. Gleue said. "We had no choice but to make appropriate price adjustments. More are expected in 2007."

On the ink side, Micro Inks was particularly strong in heatset, coldset and sheetfed inks as well as raw materials, which made for a strong fit, as Hostmann-Steinberg itself is an industry leader in sheetfed and heatset inks. Mr. Gleue said that he sees an upturn in business, and that many of Hostmann-Steinberg's customers are enjoying growth.

Meanwhile, Hostmann-Steinberg is working on new projects, which should further drive the company's growth in the North American marketplace in the coming years.

"We expect further growth in the particular target areas we are focusing on," Mr. Gleue said. "This is valid for 2007 as well as the following years. We are working on exciting new projects for and within our North American business unit."


3535 SW 56TH ST.


PHONE: (515) 471-2100 OR

(800) 728-8200

FAX: (515) 471-2201



P.O. Box 10064


PHONE: (434) 847-9033

FAX: (434) 847-0910




MAJOR PRODUCTS: Solvent-based, water-based, energy curable and specialty liquid inks and coatings and related point-of-use services for the packaging and label industries. Product applications include flexible packaging, labels, tobacco and folding carton using flexo, rotogravure and offset printing.

KEY PERSONNEL: Daniel McDowell, president; Jim Ross, head of Flexible Packaging Business Unit; Daniel McDowell, acting head of Paper, Plastics, & Label (PPL) Packaging Business Unit; Dr. Lothar Schaffeler, director of technology--Flexible Packaging; Manuel Rivas, director of technology--PPL Packaging; Sara Eason, director of manufacturing; Jyoti Gidvani, director of purchasing; Jim Stoelk, director of corporate services; Dave Cox, director of supply chain.

NUMBER OF EMPLOYEES: 500 (U.S., Canada, Mexico and Central America).

OPERATING FACILITIES: Des Moines, IA--NAFTA headquarters and two manufacturing locations; Spartanburg, SC; Neenah, WI; Drums, PA; King of Prussia, PA; New Hope, MN; Vacaville, CA; Woodbridge, Ontario, Canada; Prescott, Ontario, Canada; Oakville, Ontario, Canada; Montreal, Quebec, Canada; Toluca, Mexico; Guadalajara, Mexico; Mexico City, Mexico; Queretaro, Mexico; Guatemala City, Guatemala; San Salvador, El Salvador.

COMMENTS: Siegwerk's NAFTA group had an excellent year in 2006, posting double-digit growth while continuing to integrate the June 2005 acquisition of SICPA's Packaging Ink Division.

"Siegwerk NAFTA had a good growth year in 2006, which is even more surprising taking into consideration that 2006 was our first year following a major acquisition," said Daniel McDowell, president--NAFTA Region. "Margins continue to be challenged as we have not yet fully recouped the effects of raw material and other cost increases."

With the acquisition of SICPA's Packaging Ink Division in June 2005, Siegwerk NAFTA added SICPA--North America, SICPA--Mexico, and SICPA--Central America. Siegwerk Ink is currently the third largest global supplier of inks and coatings for packaging applications and second largest supplier of solvent-based flexible packaging inks in North America.

"Siegwerk NAFTA's major goal for 2006 was to integrate the Siegwerk and SICPA companies and minimize any negative impacts of integration on our customer and employee base," Mr. McDowell added. "This integration was viewed as positive by the market place as it placed Siegwerk as a major player within the packaging ink market in NAFTA. Our customer base now views Siegwerk NAFTA as an alternative due to its size, infrastructure, product portfolio and global capabilities."

The acquisition of SICPA's Packaging Ink Division broadened its markets to include narrow web labels, tobacco inks and coatings, and energy curable applications.

"The addition of SICPA also added important businesses to Siegwerk's product portfolio such as label, liquid food, and sheetfed inks," Mr. McDowell said. "We have now fully segregated into business units and consolidated our NAFTA HQ into Siegwerk's Des Moines facility. This allowed us to use our existing infrastructure to consolidate both organizations. Siegwerk has also optimized manufacturing and distribution facilities to reduce costs and improve delivery performance."

While Siegwerk's customers generally accepted the need for price increases in light of higher raw material costs, Mr. McDowell added that the company works hard to keep costs as low as possible.

"For the most part, customers were accepting of those changes that ink manufacturers have been facing due to continual rising of raw material costs," Mr. McDowell said. "Price increases are difficult on all customers, which is why Siegwerk continues to strive to provide value through process cost savings not only at the customer level but also within its own processes and formulations."

The packaging market continues to enjoy growth, and Siegwerk NAFTA is perfectly positioned to grow with their customers.

"The overall packaging market in North America is stronger than the previous year," said Jim Ross, head of flexible packaging--NAFTA. "The large printer/converters continue to add capacity through acquisitions or equipment installations. Consolidation continues in North America with increased activity through financial investors. We are optimistic about the opportunities that 2007 has to bring."


MAJOR PRODUCTS: Solvent-based gravure inks for publication.

KEY PERSONNEL: Dr. Ansgar Norm, president; Hans-Joachim Lauterbach, vice president; Dr. Juergen Roth, executive VP and general manager; Mark Ferrell, customer service.



COMMENTS: Siegwerk Group is a worldwide leader in the field of publication gravure ink for magazines and catalogs. Led by Dr. Ansgar Norm, Siegwerk Group's worldwide president of the company's print media division, Siegwerk Ink Publication had a solid year in 2006, in spite of the highly competitive nature of the market.



P.O. Box 80030

WILMINGTON, DE 19880-0030

PHONE: (877) 234-1794;

(302) 992-4264

FAX: (302) 892-5609



MAJOR PRODUCTS: Digital inks and digital printing systems.

KEY PERSONNEL: Richard J. Baird, vice president; Colin M. Davie, global sales and marketing manager; Kathleen J. Hall, business director--digital printing systems; Douglas A. Smith, business manager--DuPont Specialty Colorants & Additives.

NUMBER OF EMPLOYEES: More than 300 worldwide.

KEY LOCATIONS: Worldwide operations; in the U.S., R&D facilities in Wilmington, DE and Philadelphia, PA; manufacturing plants in Iowa, New York and Pennsylvania. Customer service and warehousing in Asia, Europe and North America.

COMMENTS: A business unit of DuPont Performance Coatings, DuPont Ink Jet, with its strong OEM base, is the leading inkjet ink manufacturer in the desktop and textile printing markets.

DuPont Ink Jet is composed of two business segments: inkjet inks and digital printing systems. On the ink side, the company is the leading manufacturer of ink for desktop printers, supplying many of the leading home printer OEMs.

On the system side, the company has developed its DuPont Artistri product portfolio for the textile market, a fully integrated, production capable digital printing system complete with equipment, software and ink. The inks come in pigment, acid dye, disperse dye or reactive dye.

DuPont Artistri is ideal for printing on all type of fabrics. The system was designed for a variety of applications, including printed textiles, accessories, apparel, home furnishings, gaming table covers, flags and banners, soft signage and trade show displays. The company has more than 25 distributors worldwide.

DuPont Ink Jet had entered the wide format aftermarket for inks with its Fusion line, but announced the discontinuation of the Fusion products effective July 1, 2006. DuPont continues to supply and support Citadel and Fortress inks for the wide format inkjet market, and is developing new offerings.




PHONE: (803) 548-2210

FAX: (803) 548-5728



MAJOR PRODUCTS: Sheetfed and web offset inks, solvent- and water-based flexo and gravure inks, energy-curable inks and coatings, overprint varnish and aqueous coatings.

KEY PERSONNEL: Phil Lambert, president and CEO; Daryl Collins, VP of national sales and regional operations; Martin Hambrock, VP of Canadian operations; Don Duncan, director of R&D; Ron Zavodny, director of purchasing; Buck Rorie, VP of finance and administration; Geoff Peters, VP of operations and technology.


OPERATING FACILITIES: 31 manufacturing plants and two sales/service centers. Headquarters and research and development facilities are located in Fort Mill, SC.

COMMENTS: During 2004 and 2005, Wikoff Color Corporation acquired three ink manufacturers, which provided Wikoff Color with more diverse product lines and expanded geographic coverage. Now that these companies--Frontier Printing Inks, Merit Printing Ink and Century Color--are fully integrated into Wikoff Color, the company is reaping significant benefits.

As a result, Wikoff Color's sales enjoyed significant growth in 2006. Excluding increases due to the 2005 acquisition of Frontier Printing Ink, a Toronto, Canada-based flexible packaging ink specialist, the company enjoyed high single-digit sales growth.

"We've had a good year," said Phil Lambert, Wikoff Color's president and CEO. "We have some large customers who are busier, and we also gained some new business. We have seen growth in flexible packaging sales in the U.S. and are realizing the benefit of our expanded product lines. No one has a more diverse product-line offering for high-end applications than we do."

The company also enjoyed growth in key markets outside of flexible packaging. "The folding carton market showed growth, especially our energy-curable folding carton business, which has been very strong," Mr. Lambert noted. "Security products have also been a very good growth area for us."

Higher raw material and operational costs are impacting Wikoff Color. The company did pass along some price increases, although Mr. Lambert noted the company did not recover the full costs of price increases it has received from suppliers.

"We are concerned with raw materials," he said. "Pricing needs to stabilize for everyone's long-term health."

Having grown the company significantly in the past three years, Mr. Lambert felt it was time to bring on more leadership to help handle the company's operations. One such move was the hiring of Geoff Peters as vice president of operations and technology.

"We have had quite a bit of growth, with three acquisitions plus internal growth, and we needed more top-management depth in our company," Mr. Lambert noted. "Geoff Peters has a lot of experience managing very diverse functions and coordinating efforts on a high level in a couple of companies outside our industry."

Overall, Mr. Lambert is optimistic about the coming year. "We feel we have some momentum carrying over from last year and are working on some promising new opportunities," Mr. Lambert said.



NEW YORK, NY 10020

PHONE: (212) 554-2310

FAX: (212) 554-2319




PHONE: (630) 930-5100

FAX: (630) 628-1759



MAJOR PRODUCTS: Sheetfed and web offset inks; UV and EB inks; conventional and UV waterless offset; solvent- and water-based gravure inks; specialty coatings; digital inks; toner; and inkjet inks. Toyo Ink America LLC manufactures offset inks, while LioChem, Inc., Conyers, GA, manufactures liquid inks, specialty coatings, colorants and adhesives.

KEY PERSONNEL: Toyo Ink International: Fusao Ito, president; John Higgins, CFO. Toyo Ink America: Fusao Ito, president/CEO; John Copeland, executive VP/COO; James F. MacNeill, VP, CFO; Isao Kameoka, VP operations/technical; Mike Keegan, VP, sales; LioChem: Yasuo Koga, president; Hudson Moody, GM, colorants division; Terry Hall, GM, gravure division.

COMMENTS: Toyo Ink America had an excellent year in 2006, with the company enjoying particularly good results in the commercial sheetfed ink market, as well as in the UV, hybrid and heatset markets.

"We've seen strong growth in our Hyplus 100 sheetfed process inks," said John Copeland, COO of Toyo Ink America, LLC. "With the rebound of the sheetfed market and new growth opportunities for Toyo in commercial packaging, sales were firm with a growth rate in the double digits. Our newly developed Toyo King HyUnity soy Kaleido four-color process inks also made great inroads in commercial print. Sales for Kaleido took off in the second half as word got out of its unique ability to expand the color gamut that approximates six- or seven-color printing.

"In the area of printing inks, sales of sheetfed, UV, hybrid and heatset were strong," Mr. Copeland added. "With the rebound of the sheetfed market in 2006, revenues for sheetfed were robust. UV series sales continued to grow at a strong pace, driven by customer need for fast cure speed, rapid turnaround, temperature and performance stability and environmental advantages, characteristics in which our products consistently come out on top. In addition we made bigger inroads into the commercial packaging market in energy-curing inks, gravure and coatings."

Mr. Copeland noted that the print industry rebounded in 2006. "Print customers appeared to be expanding their businesses in the second half of 2006 and early 2007 through increased print spending plans," he said.

The company's growth in prominence was clearly shown at Graph Expo 2006, where Toyo Ink America enjoyed its best performance.

"Toyo Ink America had its best-ever exhibition at Graph Expo 2006," Mr. Copeland said. "Not only were our inks running on more show presses than any other ink manufacturer, demonstrating the high reliability and printability of our products, but also we broke a booth attendance record. We attribute this success to the launch of several innovative ink and printing products at the show, which generated a high level of interest and sales opportunities from existing and prospective customers alike."

Raw material prices continue to be a challenge for ink manufacturers, and Toyo Ink America worked to keep it own prices down where possible.

"We pressed forward with efforts to cut operational costs such as adopting a more efficient inventory system and setting up internal task force to monitor shipping/packaging costs and cost trends, thus allowing us to absorb the impact," Mr. Copeland noted. "With certain products using premium raw materials, however, we had to adjust our prices accordingly."

To continue to provide the most innovative solutions and services to its U.S. customers, Toyo Ink recently announced plans to build a new $20 million plant and R&D center in Bryan, TX. The site is expected to bolster Toyo Ink's expanding color and polymer chemicals business operations and position the company to capture markets in high-growth segments.

In 2007, Toyo Ink celebrates its 100th anniversary, and Fusao Ito, president of the Toyo Ink Group in America, said it should be an outstanding year for the company in many ways.

"Year 2007 is a landmark year for the Toyo Ink Group," said Mr. Ito. "Not only will we be celebrating the centennial since the founding of the company in Japan in 1907, but also 30 years of business operations in North America. Building on this momentum, we expect our business to continue to grow steadily throughout 2007. In 2006 we introduced a host of new technologies and products that build upon our proven expertise in print-related technologies. There were great strides made to boost performance and cost efficiency in UV/EB curing systems.

"We're also leveraging our core competencies of advanced pigment manufacture and particle dispersion to develop color/light controlling technology for LCDs, advanced electronics-related materials for organic electroluminescent displays, and color materials for digital printing such as inks for electrostatic toners and ink jet printers," Mr. Ito noted. "In such markets, we believe we've kept up to the demands of end-users and have been waiting for the industry to catch up to advances we've made. As these markets evolve, we'll be well positioned to service them."

Mr. Ito said the best is yet to come for Toyo Ink.

"At this year's GraphExpo, we will be showcasing a comprehensive lineup of new products designed to ensure results in sheetfed and web offset printing applications," Mr. Ito concluded. "In addition, we will demonstrate the numerous benefits of our lineup for inks, varnishes, flexible packaging materials and adhesives for the packaging industry, where we have been gradually gaining stronger position. Toyo Ink will also be participating at the International Graphic Arts Show (IGAS) 2007, running Sept. 21-27 in Japan. It will be the Group's largest exhibition in our 100-year history, so expect big and exciting developments from Toyo Ink this year."


ORIENTE 171 # 367


PHONE: +52 55 51 ]8 1000

FAX: +52 55 5118 1090




MAJOR PRODUCTS: Offset, flexo, gravure and screen inks and overprint varnishes.

KEY PERSONNEL: Ernesto J. Sanchez, managing director; Jose Sanchez commercial director (paste inks); Miguel Talamantes, commercial director (liquid inks); Jesus Mckelligan, operations director; Salvador Duran, technical manager (paste inks); Agustin Lozano, technical manager (liquid inks).


COMMENTS: Sanchez SA de CV, the leading printing ink manufacturer in Mexico, had an outstanding year in 2006, reaching total sales of $138.3 million, which included 23.5 thousand tons of ink with a value of $92.7 million.

"We had good growth in most of our lines, exceeding 32 percent in tons in heatset inks, and 28 percent in tons in overprint varnishes," said Ernesto J. Sanchez, managing director of Sanchez SA de CV. "Our good results also included good numbers in materials, like plates and chemicals, and printing presses."

One of the keys to Sanchez SA de CV's success is its leadership team, which has been together for more than two decades. "The actual team of directors has been with the company for over 21 years, giving continuity and stability to the company," Mr. Sanchez said.

Sanchez SA de CV has completed its recent facilities improvement, and is well set for the future.

"Last year we finished our new offset plant," Mr. Sanchez said. "With this, the objective to upgrade all our facilities, including manufacturing, warehouses and labs, is over."

Sanchez SA de CV is facing the same raw material cost challenges as the rest of the industry, and is trying to keep costs down as best as possible.

"In part we solve our raw material cost by sourcing our product from China and India, but it is still one of our big concerns," Mr. Sanchez noted.

Mr. Sanchez expects slightly slower growth in 2007.

"The economy in Mexico for 2007 is expected to grow at a slower rate than is last year, mainly because of the cooling of the U.S. economy, so we are also expecting to grow less during this year," Mr. Sanchez said. "Beyond 2007, we hope to keep growing above the Mexican economy's growth."




PHONE: (630) 231-6500

FAX: (630) 231-6554



MAJOR PRODUCTS: Web offset heatset, coldset, sheetfed and UV/EB inks. CIC is also one of the largest blanket converters in the Midwest.

KEY PERSONNEL: Richard Breen, CEO; Gregg Dahleen, president; Doug Anderson, VP of operations; Mary Dickey, CFO; Bradley Dahleen, VP of sales.


OPERATING FACILITIES: West Chicago, IL; Minneapolis, MN; Milwaukee, WI; Carlisle, PA; Cleveland, OH; Las Vegas, NV; Toronto, Canada.

COMMENTS: After a slow first quarter, Central Ink Corporation (CIC) rebounded nicely to end up the year on par with 2005. The fourth quarter was very strong for CIC, but the company is not seeing any sign of any significant increase in printing so far in 2007. The company, whose core business is heatset ink, continues to see the heatset printing industry impacted by consolidation.

In a major personnel move, Gregg Dahleen has been promoted to president of CIC, while Richard Breen, the company's founder, will retain the title of CEO.

"It is a well deserved promotion for Mr. Dahleen," Mr. Breen said. "He brings a wealth of printing, ink and sales experience to his new position."

In particular, the company posted nice growth in UV and news inks. "The UV market continues to be emerging for our company," Mr. Dahleen said. "We also achieved significant growth in the coldset marketplace."

Mr. Dahleen stresses the importance of capital improvements for his company, and 2006 saw CIC investing in increased automation for its main production facility in West Chicago. For 2007, CIC is in the process of updating the company's dry grinding facility, tripling batch size and adding automation controls.

Mr. Dahleen noted that profitability is a challenge, but added that Central Ink will not compromise on quality or service.

"Every year brings new challenges to our industry," Mr. Dahleen said. "CIC is committed to providing our customers a quality product along with technical support. We expect that doing this and maintaining profitability will be a challenge for many years to come."




PHONE: (913) 342-4060

FAX: (913) 342-4752



MAJOR PRODUCTS: UV screen, UV flexo, UV digital (piezo inkjet), solvent-based digital and solvent-based screen inks; screen pre-press; Inca Digital Printers.

KEY PERSONNEL: Ed Carhart, CEO of Sericol International; Mitch Bode, senior VP; Chris Lomas, VP of sales; Steve Pocock, technical director; Terry Mitchell, director of marketing.



COMMENTS: Fujifilm Sericol's sales were strong in 2006. "Our North American business grew in 2006 with significant market share gains in UV screen inks, increased market penetration of digital equipment, growth in digital inks, and some promising growth in UV narrow web inks," reported Mitch Bode, senior vice president.

"Graphic screen and digital inks for point-of-purchase display and election year signage were two drivers of growth, and we added a number of significant new accounts in 2006 that also fueled our growth in this segment," reported Chris Lomas, vice president of sales for Fujifilm Sericol's North American business.

Sales of Inca flatbed digital presses, particularly the versatile Spyder 320, also increased significantly in 2006. The added feature of Uvijet white ink to the Spyder platform, coupled with its industry-leading quality and speed, has resulted in increased demand for this press platform. The Inca Turbo and Spyder have set the standard for quality and speed in UV digital flatbed presses. Sericol also launched a special website ( to help customers better understand production speed, resolution quality and productivity measurements of digital flatbed printing.

Digital ink volumes, including Uvijet inks for the Turbo and Spyder as well as Color+ solvent digital ink for a number of press platforms, grew significantly in 2006.

"We see our point-of-purchase and display graphics' customers adopting digital and moving short production run graphics from screen to digital," said Mr. Lomas, adding that the Color+ line of solvent digital inks for grand format printers provide stronger colors, finer print detail and increased ink mileage.

Sericol also recorded solid growth in narrow web inks, fueled largely by Sericol's Uvisleeve shrink sleeve ink. Shrink sleeves are experiencing tremendous growth, particularly within the consumer package labeling market. The opacity, high slip and shrink capabilities of the Uvisleeve inks are gaining widespread market acceptance, and more and more narrow web printers are transitioning from traditional labels to shrink labels.

Sericol established a narrow web training center including an investment in a narrow web press that will be used for training as well as R & D testing of new flexo inks. "Having a press available will speed our product development time and our response time in providing solutions to our customers," commented Steve Pocock, technical director.

Escalating cost of raw materials was a challenge for Fujifilm Sericol in 2006, however global purchasing power and formulation expertise helped offset some of these increases. Productivity improvements in manufacturing also contributed to holding the line on prices in the market. Sericol also initiated partnering programs with customers to reduce shipment frequency and lower freight cost. Multiple distribution points across North America have also kept freight costs under control while maintaining exceptional on-time customer service levels.

Fujifilm Sericol has added more personnel throughout the organization in 2006. "Our business is growing and we continue to add personnel to provide support to our customers and deliver on our promise of "More than Ink ... Solutions," Mr. Bode reported.

Fujifilm Sericol is optimistic about opportunities for growth in 2007. Ed Carhart, CEO, commented, "We are investing in digital solutions for our customers while fully supporting our traditional screen and narrow web ink businesses. We plan to add many new products to our screen, digital and flexo product lines, and expand our marketing and distribution through our Fujifilm affiliates across North America. We are very optimistic about 2007 and beyond."



KEENE, NH 03431

PHONE: (603) 352-1130

FAX: (603) 357-5871



MAJOR PRODUCTS: Markem Corporation is a world leader in innovative and reliable product identification solutions for the world's leading companies. Solutions include equipment, software, supplies and services for industries including food and beverage, cosmetics, pharmaceutical and electronics. Markem is also on the leading edge of RFID implementations and traceability solutions. The company's products include laser, thermal transfer, piezo inkjet and print and apply printers, software, supplies and services, which enable manufacturers to automate and facilitate coding, marking and labeling functions.

KEY PERSONNEL: Jeffrey B. Miller, president, Markem.


OPERATING FACILITIES: Markem operates from headquarters in Keene, NH, and has additional development and manufacturing facilities in San Diego, CA and Nottingham, UK. Markem has subsidiaries in 17 countries, including Canada, China, UK, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, Netherlands, Philippines, Singapore, Spain, Switzerland and Uruguay. Markem also has agents and representatives in more than 50 other countries around the world.

COMMENTS: Markem is a leader in innovative and reliable product identification solutions for the world's leading companies. Solutions include equipment, software, supplies and services, for industries including food and beverage, cosmetics, pharmaceutical and electronics.

In a major move, Markem, a privately-held business that was founded in 1911, was acquired by New York-based Dover Corporation, a diversified industrial manufacturer with $6 billion in annualized revenue from operating companies that manufacture specialized industrial products and equipment.

Markem has annualized sales of about $290 million, of which Ink World estimates that a quarter, or $75 million, is in inks. Markem will report to Dover Technologies and operate as an independent operating company in conjunction with DTI's Product Identification Group, which will have annualized revenue of more than $800 million. Dover consists of more than 50 companies, including Datamax, IMAJE and O'Neil Product Development in the product identification industry.

"We are pleased to welcome Markem into the Dover A family," said Ronald L. Hoffman, president and CEO of Dover. "The acquisition of Markem creates a leading global presence in the exciting product identification market for Dover. With the addition of Markem to our Product ID Group we have enhanced our product offerings, expanded our customer base, and extended our global reach."

As part of the agreement, Markem will retain its company name and remain at its Keene location. Dover Corporation believes in a decentralized management philosophy. The agreement with Dover Corporation reinforces and strengthens Markem's strong position in the wide-ranging product identification industry, creates growth opportunities for the future and preserves the company's position as a business and community leader in New Hampshire.

"We are excited by the possibilities that this combination with Dover offers the people of Markem, our customers, our communities and our business partners," said Jeffrey B. Miller, president of Markem Solutions. "It is evident that Markem will integrate well with Dover on the business side. It is equally important that Dover encourages and supports Markem in maintaining our core values and collaborative culture as well as our commitment to community."

Markem Corporation announced the closure of its Aellora Digital business unit, based in Keene, NH, in November. Mr. Miller noted that Markem will retain some valuable Aellora intellectual property in chemistries and drop-on-demand ink jet devices, adding to a large body of existing Markem intellectual property accumulated over decades of experience in advanced chemistries and ink jet technology, and added that some Aellora products will transition into Markem.



TETERBORO, NJ 07608-1202

PHONE: (201) 478-5600

FAX: (201) 478-5650



MAJOR PRODUCTS: Sheetfed, UV, waterless, heatset web, flexo and gravure inks, coatings and varnishes.

KEY PERSONNEL: Jeffrey I. Simons, chairman, CEO and president; Stan Hittman, executive VP; Harold Rubin, CFO; James LaRocca, senior VP, sales and branch operations; Sal Moscuzza, senior VP, principal ink technologist; Stephen Simpson, senior VP, chief technical officer.


OPERATING FACILITIES: 25 branches and 30 in-plant facilities nationally. The company operates two facilities through its Gotham Ink operations (NY and MA). Spinks Ink Co. is also a subsidiary located in Chicago, IL.

COMMENTS: Superior Printing Ink had a successful year in 2006, with profitability improving. It was also an eventful year, as the company relocated its headquarters to Teterboro, NJ.

"Superior is pleased with 2006 overall, and is excited to look ahead to 2007," said Jeffrey Simons, chairman, CEO and president. "The company was profitable, moved into our new state-of-the-art HQ in Teterboro, NJ and continued to focus on new product development, UV and servicing our customers nationwide. The UV and commercial packaging markets have been and are predicted to be a significant growth area for Superior."

On Sept. 11, Superior Printing Ink moved its corporate headquarters from New York City to Teterboro, NJ.

"The new headquarters and R&D facility reaffirms SPI's commitment to both the commercial and packaging lithographic printer," Mr. Simons said. "Our new resin synthesis laboratory allows us to extend our unique understanding of all types of commercial inks into the fundamentals of resin design.

"We built this new facility as a platform for future growth," Mr. Simons added. "With a state-of-the-art research and development center, color lab, manufacturing plant and administrative offices, our new headquarters offer a base for enhanced product development and support to all our customers nationwide."

The new headquarters is part of Superior Printing Ink's major capital initiatives, and follows closely on the December 2005 opening of the company's automated varnish manufacturing facility at its Central Manufacturing Facility and Warehouse Distribution Center in Hamden, CT.

"In the face of increasing global competitiveness, Superior is meeting the challenge with innovative technology and products designed to help customers achieve optimal results in print production," Mr. Simons said.

Superior Printing Ink is working to improve its efficiency to help defray higher raw material costs.

"In general we have focused on achieving economies of scale to help offset some of the negative impact of higher raw material costs," Mr. Simons said.

For Superior Printing Ink and the markets it serves, business has been challenging. Mr. Simons said that companies that provide the best quality and service will be the ones that will thrive in the future.

"Overcapacity is still an issue, and there appears to be overall flat growth in our market sectors," Mr. Simons concluded. "The only certainty going forward is that tough business conditions will continue for our customers and ourselves. The ability to substantially differentiate both products and services will be the hallmark of those companies that are successful in the graphic arts industry over the coming years."




PHONE: (323) 720-4000

FAX: (323) 721-6000


MAJOR PRODUCTS: Heatset, sheetfed and UV inks.

KEY PERSONNEL: Urban S. Hirsch III, ex-president; Scott Jacobson, VP manager; Tim Van Scoy, VP of sales and marketing; Peter Notti, another VP; Masood Solaimani, VP UV/EB.


OPERATING FACILITIES: Commerce, CA; Elk Grove Village, IL; Portland, OR; and 34 in-plant facilities.

COMMENTS: Providing excellent quality and service is essential for companies to succeed in the commercial sheetfed marketplace. Ink Systems, Inc. has taken those ingredients and gone the extra mile, developing top-flight stainless steel in-plant operations run by experienced personnel, manufacturing high-quality ink systems and running proprietary software.

In recent years, Ink Systems made solid sales gains, and 2006 was another year of growth for the company, as its sales grew nearly 14 percent.

"We had a good year," said Urban Hirsch III, ex-president of Ink Systems, Inc. "We added some accounts, and we were lucky. If we do things right, we'll probably do well and continue to grow."

The company's 50,000 square foot Commerce, CA headquarters features state of-the-art labs and production facilities, which create everything from the inks to the stainless steel equipment used for its in-plant facilities. The company also has a 20,000 square foot facility in Elk Grove Village, IL as well as an 18,000 square foot facility in Portland, OR.



SHAWNEE, KS 66227-3290

PHONE: (913) 422-1888

FAX: (913) 422-2296



MAJOR PRODUCTS: Screen printing inks including conventional, UV and water-based, and digital inks.

KEY PERSONNEL: J. Jeffrey Thrall, CEO; Mike Fox, president; Richard Bowles, VP and GM; Mike McGowan, VP and technical director; Jim Davidson, VP, international sales; Gary Blair, director of operations.

OPERATING FACILITIES: Five in the U.S., UK, and Canada.

COMMENTS: Nazdar enjoyed excellent growth in 2006, as the company's 2006 acquisition of inkjet ink specialist Lyson, Ltd. and a wide variety of new products led to a very successful year.

"We had a great year," said Richard Bowles, vice president and general manager of Nazdar's Inks and Coatings Division. "We had our highest growth in recent memory, which was accomplished by sound strategic growth. While our Lyson acquisition was our major highlight in 2006, we also grew marketshare in North America and improved our international presence by bringing on new distributors."

While inkjet has made inroads into the screen market, it is also a complementary technology that allows screen printers to handle short runs more cost effectively. As a result, many screen printers have also successfully moved into digital.

By acquiring Lyson, Nazdar made the same move, with similar success. Lyson had a complete range of products, including digital inks for all major inkjet print technologies, including piezo, thermal and CIJ.

Lyson manufactures both solvent- and water-based inks in pigment and dye formulations for markets such as industrial coding and marking, office printing, wide format graphics, fine art, photography, proofing and grand format billboard printing.

"People are realizing that the digital and screen markets are complementary," Mr. Bowles noted. "Digital presses do short runs effectively, which has helped the screen market, and screen printers who have invested in digital seem to have grown their business on both sides.

"By acquiring Lyson, we broadly widened our inkjet portfolio, which allows us to better serve our customers," Mr. Bowles added. "It also added to our R&D capabilities on the digital side, and provided us with the facility in Europe to support our products. It's a great marriage between our infrastructure and their products."

The past year was a good one for Nazdar and for its customers.

"We had good growth across the board," Mr. Bowles noted. "Our customers in North America reported outstanding performance, as the economy grew very robustly and provided a tailwind for the printing industry. Our customers were very busy last year, and we are seeing increased capital investment."

Higher raw material and operational costs continued to impact the ink industry, and Nazdar was forced to raise prices to at least partially recover the higher costs.

"We were able to pass along a portion of the costs," Mr. Bowles said. "Last year, the environment was right to raise prices. Consumers saw gas prices rise and it hit home."

New products are a key driver to Nazdar's growth. The company's PowerPrint UV series of inks, formulated to meet the processing speeds of the most modern printing equipment, curing at lower UV output with low odor, have been successful in the market.

In particular, PowerPrint Plus 1800 is ideal for rigid substrates, and PowerPrint Banner 1900 is a multipurpose UV curable screen ink formulated for use on flexible substrates for both indoor and outdoor point-of-purchase applications.

"The product lifecycle has shortened considerably," Mr. Bowles noted. "We always need to provide innovative new inks into the market, which is a high-tech business, and our new inks are helping us maintain our growth.

Looking ahead, Mr. Bowles expects another good year for Nazdar. "We anticipate a good growth year in 2007," he said. "New technologies, new geographies and better service and support will continue to feed our growth."



185 OVAL DR.


PHONE: (63 I) 715-7000

FAX: (631) 715-7020



MAJOR PRODUCTS: Conventional offset and waterless offset, duplicator and inkjet inks.

KEY PERSONNEL: Joe Bendowski, president and CEO; Ken Ferguson, technical director; Robert Langer, VP of finance; John Sammis, VP, sales and marketing; John Bendowski, national sales manager.


OPERATING FACILITIES: Headquarters and manufacturing in Islandia, NY, and a central distribution center in Chicago.

COMMENTS: Van Son Holland Ink made its reputation serving the small-sized commercial offset business. When that business began to feel the impact of digital technologies, Van Son Holland Ink needed to rethink its approach, and began to pour its efforts into the mid- and large-sized commercial offset business.

Those efforts are paying off nicely for Van Son Holland Ink. As a result of versatile new products such as Quickson PRO as well as its successful Vs Series partnership program, the company has made inroads into the mid- and large-sized commercial offset business.

"Our real growth continues to be in the mid- and large commercial offset side of the business, which is all potential for us since traditionally we've been in the small offset side of the business," said Joe Bendowski, president and CEO of Van Son Holland Ink. "Our potential is growing tremendously on that side of the business."

The Vs Series alliance has been a key driver of that growth. Technical support is critical when dealing with the commercial offset market. In order to reach these new customers, Van Son Holland Ink initiated partnerships with a select group of small ink manufacturers strategically located across North America. These companies are successfully selling and servicing the new line of Van Son inks.

"The Vs Series alliance is growing in terms of volume, sales and membership," Mr. Bendowski said. "Last year, we added five or six new partners to our program on a geographically exclusive basis. We now have 22 partners in North America, and it is a win-win for all of us.

"Our partners do a great job," Mr. Bendowski added. "We do the marketing and production, as well as technical support where needed, and our partners know ink as well if not better than we do."

The Vs5 ink was the first product sold under the new format. In order to meet the requests for its partners for additional products, Van Son created a few new inks in the Vs Series: Vs3, a high-quality oil-based ink; Vs4, a waterless inK; and the newest product in the series, the Vs7, a hard dry, super rub resistant version of Vs5.

Meanwhile, the Quickson PRO line of competitively-priced oil-based sheetfed inks, which were introduced at Print 05, has enjoyed success in the market.

"The acceptance of our Quickson PRO series has been excellent," Mr. Bendowski said. "Our traditional dealer network is finding great success with the PRO series."

Additionally, the company is seeing growth for its ANK inks designed for the KBA Karat presses.

"ANK is ideal for KBA Karat presses," Mr. Bendowski said. "The KBA Karat is not a large market today, but it's growing, and word is spreading quickly that we are making a consistent high-quality product to meet its needs."

Van Son is also witnessing growth in its ink tube sales. "We have seen a tremendous jump in our ink tube sales, as that technology becomes more mainstream," Mr. Bendowski noted.

The Asia-Pacific market offers further opportunities for ink manufacturers, and Van Son Holland Ink is taking advantages of those opportunities.

"The Asia-Pacific market is incredible," Mr. Bendowski said. "We are expanding in the Asia-Pacific region, with our Korea commercial offset ink plant and our sales efforts in China both doing extremely well."

All in all, Mr. Bendowski sees exciting opportunities ahead for Van Son Holland Ink.

"We see continued growth in all our markets and a continuation of the good things that happened in 2006," Mr. Bendowski concluded.

18 EFI, INC.



PHONE: 650-357-3500

FAX: 650-357-3907



MAJOR PRODUCTS: Through its VUTEk and Jetrion product lines, EFI is the market leader in inkjet inks and printing systems for the superwide, (e.g., billboards, signage, POP, etc.), label, packaging, direct mail and commercial printing markets. EFI offers a wide range of ink products for the industrial inkjet markets, including water-, solvent- and UV-based inks.

KEY PERSONNEL: Guy Gecht, CEO; Fred Rosenzweig, president; Joe Cutts, COO; John Ritchie--CFO; Ken Stack, VP/GM Jetrion Industrial Inkjet Systems; Chet Pribonic, VP/GM VUTEk.

NUMBER OF EMPLOYEES: Approximately 1,800.

OPERATING FACILITIES: 23 worldwide offices.

COMMENTS: Electronics for Imaging, Inc. (EFI) is the world leader in color digital print servers, superwide format printers and inks, and commercial and enterprise print management solutions. EFI's award-winning solutions, integrated from creation to print, deliver increased performance, cost savings and productivity. The company's robust product portfolio includes Fiery digital color print servers; superwide digital inkjet printers, UV and solvent inks; industrial inkjet printing systems, print production workflow and management information software; and corporate printing solutions.

On the inkjet side, EFI has two of the leading technology solutions in their respective segments: VUTEk and Jetrion Industrial Inkjet Systems. Together, these product lines had a record year in 2006, with sales up significantly over 2005, both through organic growth and through acquisition.

The major highlight for EFI's inkjet division was the acquisition of Jetrion LLC, a leading innovator of inkjet printers, inks and custom printing systems for the label and packaging industries, from the Flint Group for $40 million in October 2006. Jetrion had recently opened a new 35,000 sq ft. headquarters in Ypsilanti, MI, significantly increasing manufacturing capacity.

For the full year 2006, Jetrion is expected to post revenues of approximately $16 million to $18 million. The Jetrion products are currently anticipated to show top line growth of 30-40 percent in 2007. EFI will be making investments to expand the Jetrion product line and distribution.

"Jetrion's advanced technology and very talented team are great additions to our inkjet business and are a key element in fulfilling our strategy to expand our presence in the industrial inkjet market," said Guy Gecht, EFI CEO. "We are especially impressed with Jetrion's packaging and label printing expertise, and we see this as an emerging market opportunity for digital printing given the increasing demand for short-runs, variable content and fast turn-around in these segments. In addition, the Jetrion and VUTEk development capabilities complement each other quite nicely. Combining EFI's leadership in precision color and intelligent, high speed Raster Image Processing (RIP) technology with the market-leading innovation of the VUTEk and Jetrion product lines will give us multiple opportunities to share expertise, benefiting all of our products."

"We are excited to be a part of the EFI team and be able to leverage their global reputation, vast industry relationships and financial strength to gain greater market reach and provide our valued customers with an even higher quality of service," said Dr. Kenneth Stack, VP/GM Jetrion Industrial Inkjet Systems. "Our customers and employees are also benefiting from EFI's culture of innovation and technical depth, allowing us to remain competitive and forward-thinking."

The transition has been hugely successful. EFI and Jetrion personnel have collaborated closely in order to successfully accelerate a smooth transition. Already, Jetrion has been able to leverage EFI's sales, marketing and operations infrastructure in order to develop cross marketing and operational efficiencies. Customers are benefiting immediately from the fact that they can get full end to end printing solutions from a single company: everything from powerful Fiery print servers and controllers to sophisticated Web-to-Print tools to high-speed, high-quality print fulfillment via Jetrion and VUTEk printing systems.

Aside from its acquisition, Jetrion was active on a number of fronts. The company-joined the Brand Protection Alliance, a group of companies in the printing industry aimed at providing anti-counterfeiting technologies and solutions to brand owners and their suppliers. Jetrion launched its Jetrion 4000 Series UV Label Press, an affordable, full-color, digital narrow label press, along with a new UV4000 set of CMYK inks, and collaborated with Crown to build a full-scale production system prototype for the world's first high-resolution, full-color UV digital inkjet printed cans.

VUTEk was also active, launching its VUTEk BioVu ink, the first solvent-based ink made from a renewable resource, and the only one recognized by the EPA. BioVu is derived from corn, and is another of EFI's "green" initiatives and part of the company's long-held commitment to improving the environment and benefiting its global customers.

"Unlike many new products, which are step change improvements, BioVu ink is a revolutionary advancement that will improve not only our customers' environmental footprint, but also their bottom lines," said Mr. Gecht. "It represents our commitment to protecting an increasingly fragile Earth, one we hope others in the industry will follow."

VUTEk also introduced QS3200 and QS2000 with their UV inks, first in an all-new category of printers that combine EFI's production and workflow management technologies with the market-leading digital print capabilities of its VUTEk superwide format printers. In addition, EFI launched a Fiery XF color RIP for VUTEk printers.

With all of these changes in place, EFI has high expectations for 2007, with anticipation of double-digit revenue and earnings growth for the year, driven by exciting new products and combinations of solutions across the entire EFI family of products/technologies.






PHONE: (703) 455-8050

FAX: (703) 450-2423




MAJOR PRODUCTS: Security and conventional inks for intaglio, offset, screen, flexo and gravure security printing applications.

KEY PERSONNEL: James Bonhivert, CEO and president; Tom Jay, VP of sales and marketing; Tom Classick, technical director

NUMBER OF EMPLOYEES: Approximately 100.

OPERATING FACILITIES: Springfield, VA; Chicago, IL; Fort Worth, TX; and Vaudreuil-Dorian, Quebec.

COMMENTS: The field of currency and documents is among the most complex for ink manufacturers, who have to develop new technologies that counterfeiters and terrorists will be unable to duplicate. SICPA Management S.A., a Switzerland-based security ink specialist, dominates the field, using its technological expertise to formulate and supply an estimated 85 percent of the world's currency and document inks.

In September 2005, SICPA Management S.A. divested the company's Packaging Inks Division to Siegwerk Group. With that sale, SICPA now focuses on two areas, Banknote and Document Security, its core business, and Product Security. The Product Security business group is a perfect match for the company's high-technology products, which are helping in the battle against counterfeits and smuggling in segments ranging from pharmaceuticals, tobacco and alcohol, food and luxury goods.

SICPA Securink Corporation, SICPA's U.S. subsidiary, is the undisputed leader in the security ink business, with its inks appearing on currency and security documents to other documents of value. For SICPA, developing the color-shifting Optically Variable Ink (OVI) for U.S. currency has played a key role in cutting down counterfeiting. SICPA formulates numerous innovative inks in its R&D laboratories for currency, documents and brand security, and backs it up with strong technical support.




PHONE: (870) 247-2080

FAX: (870) 247-5317


MAJOR PRODUCTS: Water- and solvent-based flexo and gravure packaging inks and coatings; UV and EB coatings.

KEY PERSONNEL: Jerry Mosley, CEO; Mitch Baker, president; Michael Mosley, CFO; Scott Clark, VP and general manager.


OPERATING FACILITIES: Pine Bluff, AR; Valley Forge, PA; Roanoke, VA; Florence, KY; Winston-Salem, NC; West Memphis, TN; Jacksonville, FL.

COMMENTS: American Inks & Coatings (AIC), led by Jerry Mosley and Mitch Baker, longtime leaders of Progressive Ink, continued to successfully expand its business, posting 10 percent sales growth in 2006 while eliminating some less profitable business.

"It was a good year," said Mr. Baker, AIC's president. "Our sales were up 10 percent, even though we pulled out of some unprofitable business. We have our pricing where it needs to be, and walked away from business where it didn't make sense, and we are looking forward to a great 2007."

AIC offers a complete range of packaging inks, from water-based inks for multiwall bag, high graphics corrugated, folding carton, gift wrap and other packaging to solvent-based inks for flexible packaging and other innovative applications. Mr. Baker noted that AIC's growth was across all segments

"Our growth has been good across the board," Mr. Baker said. "Even though reports show that paperboard consumption is going down, the business still seems to be healthy, while film consumption is continuing to grow larger."

In a key move, AIC closed down its Valley Forge, PA manufacturing facility, which dated back to the 1930s. The company opened up a new R&D and distribution facility in Valley Forge, PA, and upgraded its Winston-Salem, NC blending facility into a full-fledged manufacturing plant.


3300 HIGHWAY #7, SUITE 310



PHONE: (905) 660-6446

FAX: (905) 660-5766



MAJOR PRODUCTS: Offset inks, water- and solvent-based flexo and gravure inks.

KEY PERSONNEL: Robert Rieger, president and CEO; Chester Dec, vice president, operations; Debbie Dion, CFO; Willy Voelzke and Dave Hammett, technical directors.


COMMENTS: Rieger Inks consists of two divisions: Rieger Printing Ink Company Limited, which specializes in cold web inks, and Rieger Flexo and Gravure Limited, which specializes in water- and solvent-based inks. While the company's 2006 sales were flat compared to 2005, Rieger Inks had a strong year as it moved away from commodity businesses.

"We took a long look at our accounts this past year, and we chose to leave accounts that were unprofitable," said Chester Dec, vice president of operations. "Fortunately, we were able to balance those losses out with new accounts we picked up."

One key new account is CanWest Newspapers in Canada, where Rieger Inks successfully secured 100 percent of the ink business. "CanWest Newspapers is working out great," Mr. Dec noted.

Rieger Inks is ISO 9001 certified, and is committed to top quality ink products along with uncompromising technical and sales support. The company takes pride in its R&D, and is developing new products to meet their customers' needs. Rieger Inks' success is a result of the drive to put "Customer Satisfaction First."

"We want to make an honest buck," Mr. Dec said. "We manufacture a little differently, and we feel that we offer a better product. We won't be a commodity manufacturer."
The North American Top 20 Rankings

Rank   Company                North           Global Ink          Last
                            American        Sales (Parent)        Year
                            Ink Sales        (in millions)

1      Sun Chemical         $1,700 *    $3500 (Sun Chemical) **      1
2      Flint Group            $950 *    $2730 (Flint Group)          2
3      INX International      $300      $884 (Sakata INX)            3
4      CR/T                   $235 *                                 4
6      Hostmann-Steinberg     $190      $800 (Huber Group)           6
5      Siegwerk               $185      $1100 (Siegwerk Group)       5
7      DuPont Ink Jet         $150 *                                 7
8      Wikoff Color           $133 *                                 8
9      Toyo Ink America       $105      $1080 (Togo Ink)             9
10     Sanchez SA de CV        $94                                  --
11     Central Ink             $75                                  10
11     Fujifilm Sericol        $75 *    $275 (Fujifilm              10
                                          Sericol Intl)
11     Markem                  $75 *                                10
14     Superior                $70                                  13
15     Ink Systems             $66                                  17
16     Nazdar                  $65 *                                13
17     Van Son                 $64      $150 (Royal Dutch           15
                                          Van Son)
18     EFI, Inc.               $60 *                                --
18     SICPA Securink          $60 *    $500 (SICPA Group)          16
20     American Inks           $55                                  --
         & Coatings
20     Rieger Inks             $55                                  --

* Ink World estimate

** Parent company Dainippon Ink & Chemicals
has global ink sales of $4.67 billion
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Article Details
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Author:Savastano, David
Publication:Ink World
Article Type:Cover story
Geographic Code:1CANA
Date:Apr 1, 2007
Previous Article:Ink companies are being called upon to help drive toward carbon labeling.
Next Article:Companies to watch.

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