Nov 24, 2015
On Friday the 20th of November the news broke that the Flint Group has bought Xeikon from previous venture capital owner Bencis, almost two and half years after they bought the digital print and platesetter business from Punch International.
Xeikon will continue to operate in its existing lines of business and will now become a new division known as Flint Group Digital Printing Solutions. Even in terms of personnel, continuity is sought, with Xeikon CEO Wim Maes staying as president of the division. The deal needs the approval of European competition authorities, which is expected by end of 2015 as there should not be any concerns about the transaction.
In some ways the acquisition marks a U-turn for Flint after it sold its nascent Jetrion inkjet division to EFI in 2006. EFI paid around $40 million as its first investment in inkjet printing, in the process starting a new line of business, while digital activities pretty much stopped at Flint. Now Flint Group feels it is ready to throw their hat again into the digital arena, possibly seeing the success the Jetrion business is having today. A bigger driver is likely the changed ownership that Flint Group itself is now experiencing. Since 2014 Flint has been essentially an equity capital owned business, owned by Goldman Sachs Merchant Banking Division in partnership with Koch Equity Development. Prior to that, Flint had grown by acquisition and merger into a leading position in litho and packaging inks. To this day, Flint continues to acquire other ink businesses to consolidate its position.
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Feb 11, 2015
Later this year, Yale University Press will publish a biography of a person who truly made a difference in the printing industry.
H. Joseph Gerber (1924–1996) founded of the Gerber Scientific Instrument Company. He was imprisoned in a labor camp at the age of 13, and in 1940 he and his mother fled war-torn Austria, immigrating to the United States. After completing high school in just two years, he entered Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI) on a scholarship, graduating with a Bachelor of Science degree in aeronautical engineering in 1946.
In his junior year at RPI, Gerber invented the Gerber Variable Scale. With a $3,000 investment, the Gerber Scientific Instrument Company was born. On my first visit to his company in Connecticut, he literally dragged me to his office to show me the original scale. Read more »
Aug 29, 2012
This week Kodak made news with the announcement by CEO Antonio Perez that his company will focus on commercial, packaging, and functional printing. The choices are not surprising, given prospects now for conventional document printing (down) and for “unconventional” printing such as packaging and labels (up). Kodak is fortifying for life after its planned exit from Chapter 11 next year and has made good choices, all markets where there is still growth for digital printing.
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Apr 18, 2012
I could be wrong. After all, the show doesn’t start forÂ two weeks, but I think these will be the top stories at drupa:
- Benny Landa — Whether Landa Labs shows market-ready products or early tech demos doesn’t really matter. This will be a drupa remembered for the show that Benny Landa put on. Is it ready for prime time? We won’t know until May. One mystery that should be solved by then is why their press releases refer to “ink ejectors” rather than inkjet heads (like every other inkjet system vendor does). Could it be that they are doing something different than using inkjet heads to apply ink to paper? Wait and see. Read more »