Pre-press for Packaging Market Projected to be Influenced by Rising Technological Innovations


Pre-press for Packaging Market: Technologically-advanced Solutions Set to Replace Conventional Printing Techniques

The printing sector has consistently witnessed a series of periodic changes. As technology continues to evolve, new printing techniques have entered the fray, and have increased the demand for computer-generated layouts in the printing and pre-press for packaging market. As per observable trends in the pre-press for packaging market space, the industry has gradually swayed toward digital printing alternatives – leaving behind conventional offset printing techniques. The role of packaging has evolved with time, and today, it is a major parameter that could impact the sales of a company. Over the past decade, consumer interests toward packaging has increased at an exponential rate, which, in turn, has compelled brands to focus on the aesthetic aspects of their packaging designs. Growing consumer affinity toward innovative and attractive packaging, coupled with advances in flexographic and digital printing, are some of the leading factors that are expected to drive the growth of the pre-press for packaging market close to the US$ 5 billion figure by the end of the forecast period (2019-2027).

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Brands Turn to Flexographic Printing to Improve Packaging Graphics

During the last few years, flexographic printing has garnered significant popularity. As more and more companies align their packaging offerings in tune with evolving consumer preferences, flexographic printing has emerged as an ideal printing alternative. Companies operating in the pre-press for packaging market are leveraging the benefits of flexographic printing to solidify their foothold in the market. The adoption of flexographic printing is on the rise, and by the end of 2027, this segment is projected to attain a value of ~US$ 3.6 billion, and account for over 70% of the total pre-press for packaging market share in terms of value.

The flexographic printing technique offers brands the flexibility of printing on an array of materials, including cellophane, metallic films, plastic, and paper, among others. Further, this technique is increasingly being used to print large areas of solid color, particularly on packages in the food & beverage sector. Further, as flexographic printing allows high definition printing on roll stock or polybags, it improves clarity of the graphics on packages by a significant margin – a leading factor influencing its demand. Companies are leveraging the benefits offered by flexographic printing to formulate impactful and eye-catching branding and marketing strategies.

Brands Turn to Digital Printing to Meet High Demand for Customized Packaging

Despite the dawn of the digital era, several companies within the packaging sector are yet to recognize the true potential of digital printing, and thus, are reluctant to move away from conventional printing techniques. However, with advances in digital printing, the adoption rate has started to move in the upward trajectory, as brands can provide high-quality designs at economical prices. Despite the dominance of flexographic printing in the pre-press for the packaging market, the digital printing segment is expected to witness the highest growth at a CAGR of around 4.4% over the stipulated timeframe of the study. The growth can be attributed to the benefits offered by digital printing techniques over conventional alternatives. Digital printing allows brands to cater to evolving consumer preferences with greater efficiency and at a faster rate, which thereby improves the supply chain and reduces warehouse costs.

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As digital printing is cost-effective, quicker, and allows brands more flexibility as compared to traditional techniques, its adoption is expected to witness steady growth over the next few years. Mounting consumer interest toward customized packaging is a trend that is expected to present market players operating in the pre-press for packaging market a range of lucrative opportunities. Further, with the growing demand for customization, offset printing techniques are expected to become less valuable.

Pre-press for Packaging Market Players to Focus on New Product Launches

The onset of innovative technologies, globalization, and rapidly evolving consumer interests are prompting players operating in the pre-press for the packaging sector to introduce innovative solutions that focus on customization and sustainability. Several companies are launching new packaging solutions to cater to fluctuating consumer demands. For instance, in October 2019, Comexi announced the launch of a new solution that offers improved color stability and matching. The newly launched iCIP3 software accurately matches the pre-press color data with the press and the computer-to-plate (CTP), which leads to a coordinated color-matching procedure.

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Analysts’ Viewpoint

It is hard to ignore the digital trend within the pre-press for packaging sector. Evolving consumer trends will play a major role in influencing the operations of market players in the pre-press for packaging industry. Digital and flexographic printing are set to gain significant popularity over the forecast period, as these techniques are cost-effective, improve the supply chain, and also play an important role in reducing waste. Conventional techniques are set to lose their prominence, as cutting-edge digital alternatives are set to replace them in the near future. The demand for flexible packaging solutions will present lucrative opportunities for market players operating in the pre-press for packaging market landscape over the assessment period.

Global Pre-press for Packaging Market: Overview

  • According to Transparency Market Research’s latest market report on the pre-press for packaging market for the historical period of 2014-2018and forecast period of 2019-2027, the demand for printing and packaging is anticipated to boost the demand for pre-press for packaging services.
  • Globally, the pre-press for packaging market was valued at ~US$ 3.5 Bnin 2018 and is anticipated to witness a CAGR of ~4% during the forecast period.

Digital Printing to Transform Pre-press for Packaging Market

  • The role of pre-press for packaging services has drastically changed over the last decade. Pre-press became a game-changer for print service providers, enabling end users to deliver the highest level of satisfaction to customers while maintaining good profitability.
  • Conventionally, pre-press for packaging comprised of several time-consuming steps, and was often prone to errors, as it is a highly technical process involving a lot of manual operations.
  • However, after the advent of digital printing, market dynamics promptly shifted from plates to printing technologies such as offset and flexography. Modern pre-press for packaging solutions offer better quality with flawless images and are beneficial in the long run, despite the high installation costs involved.
  • The automated pre-press for packaging workflow incorporates a wide set of tools intended to help users boost their efficiency, lower costs, and minimize the impact of human errors.
    • Esko’s, a pre-press for packaging service provider, has an automation engine that operates through all production steps such as screening, trapping, imposition, color management, proofreading. However, it differs from conventional software, as it features several functions that correspond to the complexity of end products such as folding cartons and corrugated boxes.

Increasing Consumer Preference for Aesthetic Packaging to Propel Pre-press for Packaging Market Growth

  • Packaging plays a vital role in conveying the benefits and attributes of products to consumers at the point of sale. Packaging features also emphasize the uniqueness and originality of products. Furthermore, consumers impulsively visualize the aspects of products while viewing them on the package, and attractive packaging is positively correlated to consumers’ buying decision.
  • Nowadays, consumer purchasing is greatly influenced by the characteristics of products, which are reflected through packaging, and as a consequence, creates the demand for pre-press for packaging services.
  • Increasing preference for aesthetic packaging in the growing retail sector and rising awareness about the importance of increasing brand visibility and promotional activities is boosting the growth of the pre-press for packaging market.

Color Management to Remain Lucrative Service in Pre-press for Packaging Market

  • One of the main differentiating strategies adopted by pre-press for packaging service providers is ensuring color consistency across all devices. Digital proofing and quality control checks are two other essential services offered in the pre-press for packaging market, which are anticipated to cumulatively account for more than quarter of the global pre-press for packaging market share in 2019.
  • Brand owners are investing in color management and artwork services to obtain best printing results so as to attract customers. They are also working closely with service providers for full supply-chain solutions.

Advanced Technologies in U.S. Pre-press for Packaging Market

The U.S. is anticipated to account for more than 30% of the global pre-press for packaging market share in 2019, attributable to increasing technological developments in print and packaging industries in this region. China, India, and other ASEAN countries account for the second-largest share of the pre-press for packaging market in 2019, owing to increasing population that translates into strong demand for flexible packaging. Europe is anticipated to witness sluggish growth in the global pre-press for packaging market during the forecast period.

Global Pre-press for Packaging Market: Key Research Findings

  • The U.S. accounts for a major share in the global pre-press for packaging market. It is anticipated to retain its top position till 2027, and is projected to witness a moderate CAGR during the forecast period. Moreover, the U.S. has a better consumer confidence index (CCI) in comparison to that of Canada.
  • According to the Conference Board, the U.S. accounted for 95 points, whereas Canada accounted for around 52 points inOctober 2019, and consumers in the U.S. are buying from a wider range of brands. For pre-press for packaging service providers, this translates into a shift towards shorter runs of flexible packaging, such as labels and tags.
  • Shifting preference toward digital printing from flexographic printing, attributable to enhanced print quality in limited time offered by the digital printing method, is anticipated to boost the growth of the pre-press for packaging market in the foreseeable future.

Global Pre-press for Packaging Market: Competition Landscape

  • The market for pre-press for packaging is highly fragmented. Service providers in the pre-press for packaging market are following the path of acquisitions and mergers in order to expand their presence across the globe.
  • Some key players operating in the global pre-press for packaging market are
    • AGFA-Gevaert NV
    • Sonoco-Trident
    • Wipak Ltd.
    • Huhtamäki Oyj
    • Transcontinental Inc.
    • Oji Fibre Solutions (NZ) Ltd.
    • Flexicon AG
    • Esko-Graphics
    • Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG
    • SPGPrints Group
    • Anderson & Vreeland Inc
    • Janoschka Deutschland GmbH
    • STI Group
    • Emmerson Packaging
    • R. Packagings Ltd.


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