Epson Takes Digital Printing To A New Level In India

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Epson which has made a significant contribution to Digital Textile Printing industry comprehends that advances in technology mean increase in production and cost efficiency, vivacity of design and creativity. Epson believes that products acting as the interface between information technology and the real world where customers operate will be of critical importance. As a company that specializes in generating value in the real world, Epson’s vision is to create a new connected age of people, things and information with efficient, compact and precision technologies that generate value to customers in the form of smart technologies, environment and performance through innovation.

Today, Epson generates value with its efficient and precision technologies in printing, visual communications, wearables, robotics and micro devices to drive innovations. Epson also endeavors to strengthen its business infrastructure to support these mottos. In a telephonic interview, Vasudevan, DGM, Prographic Products, Sales & Marketing, Epson India had with Textile Excellence Special Correspondent Venkatesh Raghavan, he throws insights into the Epson’s latest introduction F2130 a Direct To Garment digital printer, company’s vision for India, global players in the market and their products in the pipeline.

How different is F2130 from Epson’s earlier products in terms of technology? What are its unique features and capabilities?

Customers can expect true garment printing reliability with SureColor SC-F2130 direct-to-garment printer. Equipped with PrecisionCore print-head technology, teamed with an automated maintenance design, the printer brings efficiency and quality that are unmatched. Easy to use, with a quick turnaround, the F2130  increases overall production, without compromising the quality.

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It can print up to 25 mm thick t-shirts. Apart from the PrecisionCore printhead technology, the printer also features with advanced automated maintenance design and Oeko-Tex ECO PASSPORT certification. In addition, it possesses easy to use garment creator software.

On the other hand, competitor’s printers require daily maintenance. With Epson there is no need for daily maintenance. In addition, it offers new print mode in Black T-shirts. It results in better energy saving.

You have specialized in various kinds of printing before foraying into digital textile printing. Can you please elaborate your journey in this area of operation? How does the Indian market react to your products for textile printing?

Digital Textile printing has three parameters, namely Dry, Wet-Dry and wet. We began with dry sublimation in 2013. We then converted them into digital making drums then onward. It helped us handle huge quantities in less time. We employed digital new dye sublimation which is predominantly used for more décor and fast fashion. In 2014, we turned our attention to auto-texture printing for t-shirt. This increased customer demand which we were able to meet in shorter time with more personalization. Digital printing came into the prime with increasing e-commerce players like Amazon and Flipkart in India. There are several players in the fray as of now.  This resulted in digital printing volume slots and better volume printing. With this, also evolved is the direct to fabric printing. This is a precursor to the near future.

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India has a vast untapped market for digital printing. Against this backdrop, how is the Indian textile digital printing market’s growth and volume is being nurtured?

In 2013, there was a gradual reduction in dye sublimation. Subsequently, it resulted in 70% increase in volumes. This also witnessed a costs diving down. By the year 2020-22, there is an expected volume increase of 6 to 7%. Polyesters are easy to print with low cost sublimation. Cotton and blends is also growing fast with reactive printing. This needs pre coats and washing/steaming. This trend is growing rapidly in the organized sector.

Since F2130 is a direct to garment digital printer, how would it benefit the garment makers, what would be ROI and how an entrepreneur should explore investing in it?

It’s predominantly good for new startups and retailers who own ecommerce sites. New entrepreneurs are potential customers and typically belong to the age group of 30-35. Besides, e-commerce site owners can avail of it for posting their designs online. ROI will take around 6 months. At present there are a lot of startup orders for digital printing in mass volumes.

You have designed a cost calculator App for LFP ink jet printers. How strong is your market position in this domain and where do you see yourselves in the years to come?

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We have made LFP machines cost efficient. They come in with extra tools too. The customers understand the costing. They come under their budget positively. It can be used in digital printing, photo printing and CAD printing. DTF will come into the market this year. Epson is a leader in DTG category in the market and we have a good market share. We also expect to emerge as a leader in App and CAD category in the coming years.

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