16th September 2014 – Epson is embarking on a strategy to energise and transform High-Street retail and professional production photo imaging with a range of “smart” production systems, the company announces today at Photokina in Germany, the world’s leading imaging exhibition.
“We are seeing the beginnings of a ‘Second Retail Wave’ of innovation in the imaging industry,” says Duncan Ferguson, Director of Professional Graphics for Epson Europe. “It is opening up exciting opportunities for High-Street retailers and imaging professionals to explore new business ideas and revenue streams built on producing a huge variety of added-value personalised products. These innovators need short-run production solutions that are affordable, easy-to-use, flexible and reliable — and we believe no one is better placed than Epson to meet these demands.”
Epson identifies two principal factors that will shape the future of the imaging industry: the enormous and growing volume of digital images being created and captured (Yahoo estimates that over 880 billion photographs will be taken in 2014) and people’s desires to do more with images than ever before.
Ability to image multiple materials heralds ‘Second Wave’
New figures from Futuresource Consulting confirm that the consumer photo imaging market is moving away from paper-based prints to more creative applications. Between 2012 and 2015, the retail value of digital prints fell by over 20%, while the rate of increase of canvas prints also rose by 21% (source: Lightwords) driven by an increased desire to display our best photographs, and the ability that digital printing has to reproduce them on this media.
Epson now heralds a ‘Second Wave’ driven by the ability of advanced digital imaging technologies to print onto a considerable variety of materials in addition to paper - such as metal, textile, wall coverings, wood, plastic, laminates, rubber and ceramics. This capability enables people to personalise more and more aspects of their environment.
Says Duncan Ferguson: “For Epson, the ‘First Wave’ started with Photo and Fine Art canvasses and also encompassed paper-based applications of photo-merchandising, such as photobooks, calendars, and cards. But in the ‘Second Wave’ people have much greater ambitions. They don’t just want to order or print their own photos, or share them via social networks, they also want to be very creative with their images. Because the world is increasingly personalised, they want to use images to personalise their possessions and create bespoke surroundings and gifts — everything from flip-flops to T-Shirts and other clothing, bags to aluminium panels, upholstery to table tops, smartphone cases to wallcoverings. These desires translate into a huge opportunity for High Street retailers and imaging professionals to expand the range of added-value bespoke, personalised products they offer — provided they have the right production solutions, at the right price, to deliver a rapid return on investment.”
The Epson solutions designed to meet the needs of this ‘Second Wave’ include:
- The SureLab range of compact mini and scalable microlabs provide retailers with a choice of production systems. The range is extended today with the commercial launch of the SureLab D7 Studio. This scalable solution can be used as a self-service order terminal or as a production ‘behind-the-counter’ microlab for the production of a wide range of photo products including leporellos, panoramics, greetings cards and leaflets.
- The SureColor SC-F2000 direct-to-garment T-Shirt printer which enables users to start a profitable T-shirt printing service with minimal outlay.
- The versatile SureColor SC-F6000 and SC-F7100 dye sublimation printers which enable the production of a wide variety of printed products such as promotional merchandise, personalised products and gifts, clothing and furnishings.
- The SureColor SC-S range of large-format printers which enable retailers and photo professionals to offer a premium customised canvas print and wall covering service. These are ideal too for studios wishing to print their own studio backgrounds onsite to create bespoke photo shoot environments.
Strong imaging heritage
Each day Epson invests $1.34 million on R&D to continue driving innovation. Epson’s strong heritage in the imaging industry means the company is best placed to drive the future of production imaging technologies and is developing more imaging products than ever before – encompassing print, projection and sensing technologies.
“We provide solutions to produce a broad spectrum of imaging applications for 360 degrees of the imaging world – from photo enthusiasts to professional photographers and High-Street retailers. The imaging market is evolving rapidly and Epson is committed to driving the business of imaging in all its forms by developing products that are designed to energise and inspire”, says Duncan Ferguson.
Epson er en ledende global aktør innen bildeprodukter inkludert skrivere, 3LCD projektorer og små –og mellomstore LCD’er. Med en innovativ og kreativ kultur, fokuserer Epson på med sine produkter - kjent for overlegen kvalitet, funksjonalitet, kompakthet og energieffektivitet – å overgå visjonen og de forventninger kunder har verden over.
Ledet av det Japan-baserte Seiko Epson Corporation, består Epson Group av over 73.000 ansatte i 94 selskaper rundt om i verden, og er stolt av vedvarende bidrag til det globale miljøet og til lokalsamfunn der Epson er representert. http://global.epson.com
Om Epson Europe
Epson Europe B.V. er konsernets regionale hovedkontor for Europa, Midt-Østen, Russland og Afrika og er lokalisert i Amsterdam. Epson Europe hadde 1655 ansatte og en omsetning på 1540 millioner euro i regnskapsåret 2012. http://www.epson-europe.com