Felton: There’s a breadth of applications and developments developing. Interior graphics are very hot at the moment and a really interesting sector of the market. Digital print for vehicle wrapping is also growing substantially, as well as vehicle wrapping for more nice sectors such as aviation and boats.
I think one of main opportunities for printers is the marketing spend for brand owners and agencies. The evolution will be to buy print with a stronger focus on price and sustainability ROM/ROI. Printers as marketing service providers is also an area that will continue to grow. Printers need to listen to their customers to deliver effective solutions to strengthen their offering. The WWS4 results show that 49 percent of respondents said their customers are looking for more integration with other media and 42 percent citing demand for cross media devices to connect print with online media. The printing community should regard this trend as a real opportunity.
Personalization is also a growth market and I think we will see this grow even more in 2014. Just look at the success of Coca-Cola’s “Share a Coke” campaign, this is definitely an area for printers to keep an eye on and offer effective solutions for customers.
Scott Fisher, President, Fisher Textiles: Apparel and signage for retail are two of the segments I think will have the biggest growth. Sports apparel for club teams like soccer or lacrosse have found that they can get custom uniforms for their clubs. Retailers are competing for customers more and more and need to advertise both in-store and out to get those customers. Graphic budgets for these items are growing as a result.
Green: There is no question that retail expansion provides growth opportunities for our industry. We see brick and mortar stores reinventing themselves to compete with the online offerings. It is an exciting time to be supporting our clients as they try to find new ways to communicate with their customers.
Greene: What happens in the retail business has a huge impact on what happens in the wide-format business and I think retail is, in some important ways, undergoing considerable change in itself. More and more retailers want to drive higher level engagement with customers, they want more information about those customers, and they want to present advertising and brand messaging to customers in the most accurate, actionable, and appropriate times. I think many PSPs in the wide-format sector that serve retailers are seeing what these changes are doing to the retail supply chain, which includes signage and graphics.
Hanulec: Right now, there is very little digital printing happening in the industrial market for thermoformed products, so that may be one of the biggest areas of growth because it is coming from such a small base. There are so many products that can benefit from this—like vending machine and gaming panels; auto, boating, and aircraft body parts; and consumer products. We will only be scratching the surface in 2014.
We’ll also see the LED market continue to grow. When you give customers the ability to print more types of products, running media that could never be used with UV or other inkjet processes, you give them much more freedom to grow their business. I think there is valid and legitimate interest in the industry regarding LED because it is a segment that should continue to outpace the industry in 2014.
Jerry Hill, Vice President of Business Development, Drytac Corporation: Window graphics will continue to grow because of the visual impact and the successful messaging that has taken place so far. Wall décor, which includes digital custom wallpaper, canvas art, and face-mounting will continue to grow, partly because of changing trends, but also because digital makes custom personalized artwork possible.
Kigin: The vehicle wrap market is expected to continue to grow. It is continually being infused with new materials in a variety of design options, as well as newer printer/ink technologies that enable more difficult applications to be completed more efficiently and with improved durability.
Within the wrap market, solid color wrap films in a growing spectrum of colors and textures are helping expand business at wrap shops.