Jan 16, 2013
Benny Landa was at EFI’s Connect event in Las Vegas this week and as part of a fireside chat with Guy Gecht and a separate meeting with the trade press and industry analysts he provided a status update.
- Market progress — Landa reported that his company had signed 430 letters of intent (LOI), a significant portion of them coming with deposits. These LOIs were from all over the world, including quite a number from Asia Pacific. He noted that the company was on track with product development and expected to have its first product in beta testing at the end of 2013. This will be the Landa S10 cut-sheet, B1-format device, which Landa said was the most popular configuration. Landa also said that the platform’s print resolution has been increased from 600 to 1,200 dots per inch.
- Beta test — Landa said that the beta tests would include one commercial version and one packaging/folding carton version and that the beta sites would most likely be in the U.S. and central Europe. The company will deploy its own service engineers to service the beta devices.
- Trade shows — Most have heard by now that Landa will not be exhibiting at IPEX (March 26 – April 2, 2014, London). Landa will not be exhibiting at China Print either (May 14-18, Beijing). Landa said that the printing industry has been reduced in size and that they know all the likely prospects, so that there is less need for a trade show to capture new leads.
- Partners — Landa expects to go to market with all seven models. He also anticipates that the company will go to market first before its partners (remember that Heidelberg, Komori, and manroland all signed partnership agreements at drupa). Landa is also looking for a workflow & front-end partner rather than developing its own front-end or workflow. Landa declined to comment further on workflow though he did say that the company’s strategy is to focus on on-demand printing (not personalization). This simplifies things some since doing personalization on a B1-format device at 12,000 sheets per hour raises some interesting questions about meeting the data requirements.
- Other news — Landa noted that his R&D company, Landa Labs, is active in multiple fields related to nanotechnology. He said that they are developing solutions for thermal heat electricity conversion, drug delivery in the body (e.g. for cancer research), and hair coloring products, among other things. He also explained that they have decided to remain a private company and that they have raised a significant amount of money to fund the digital printing project.
With no major trade show exhibitions planned for Landa in the next year or two, Benny Landa’s appearances at events like EFI Connect and Graph Expo provide a means of keeping the company in the public view. Landa’s presence at Connect is symbolic too of a friendship between the two companies that could lead to partnership, though neither is saying anything specific at this point. In a larger sense, it also speaks to the elevation in importance of user events like Connect and Dscoop, as well as vendor sponsored events like Hunkeler innovationdays, which though not a trade show, is likely to be one of the most exciting platforms this year for new product announcements related to roll-fed production digital products.
Note: InfoTrends’ Jeff Hayes, Kaspar Roos, and Stephanie Pieruccini are all at EFI Connect. This blog is based on reporting from Kaspar Roos. InfoTrends will have more coverage on Connect in the coming days. For information on a key product area related to EFI, have a look at a recent blog by InfoTrends’ Chris Little, entitled ‘InfoTrends Updates the Ultimate Guide to Web-to-Print Solutions.’
More blogs from Jim Hamilton