Large format printer market contracts in Q1

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Japan continues to be a bright spot in the worldwide large format printer (LFP) market posting positive year-over-year results in both units shipped (1.2 percent) and shipment value (1.7 percent) in the first quarter of 2013 (1Q13).

This marks the fifth consecutive quarter where the region recorded year-over-year growth in both units and shipment value.

Credit: IDC

Shipment value for the worldwide LFP market declined 12.0 percent year over year in 1Q13 on shipments of nearly 75,000 units, according to IDC?s worldwide quarterly large format printer tracker.

“Shipments of UV-curable inkjet devices have been growing over the past three years. IDC expects this trend to continue at a steady pace for the next three years,” said Phuong Hang, program manager for worldwide large format printer trackers at IDC.

Technology highlights

Despite a year-over-year contraction of 5.6 percent in 1Q13, technical remains the larger application segment with 45,900 units shipped in the quarter. This represents 61 percent of the total LFP market, up from 57 percent a year earlier.

Japan and the US were the best performance regions in terms of unit shipments with 7.5 percent and 11.5 percent year-over-year growth, respectively.

The graphics application segment declined 20 percent year over year and, at 29,000 units shipped, accounts for 39 percent of the market, down from 43 percent a year ago.

All regions recorded a year-over-year decline in units shipped in this segment with Latin America being the worst impacted region with a 40 percent decrease in shipments.

Vendor highlights

HP remains the leader in the global LFP market with 40.6-percent share of unit shipments. HP experienced a year-over-year contraction of 18.4 percent, losing 3 points of share from a year ago.

HP remains the leader in the technical segment, its traditional area of strength, with more than three times the share of its next competitor. HP also maintained the number 2 position in the graphics application segment, trailing market leader Epson.

Epson remains in second place in the overall LFP market and continues to lead the graphics applications segment. Epson’s shipments declined 13.7 percent year over year, but the vendor was able to maintain its 21 percent share of the overall market.

While technical printers are only a small part of its LFP sales, Epson has grown shipments and increased share in this segment over the past year.

Canon continues to hold the third place ranking with 16.0 percent share and close to 12,000 units shipped in the global LFP market.

The vendor grew 5.3 percent year-over-year in the technical segment, where it holds the number 2 position, while posting a decline of 13.1 percent in the graphics segment, where it holds the third spot.

Oce, which holds a 3 percent share of the LFP market, is the number 4 ranked vendor in the worldwide market. Oce’s shipments and share declined moderately year over year. Oce holds third place in the technical segment.

Roland rounds out the top 5 vendors worldwide with a 3 percent share of the worldwide LFP market, and enjoyed a small uptick in share compared to a year earlier.

Roland’s strength is the graphics segment, in which it held the number 4 position worldwide and grew 3.4 percent from a year earlier.

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