Established in 1970, Encres DUBUIT, the French company is known for its high-quality inks. Located in Mitry-Mory near Roissy-Charles de Gaulle Airport, it specialises in the formulation, manufacture and sale of technical and industrial inks for screen printing, pad printing and digital printing. Since inception, the ink major has remained at the forefront of technology. Encres DUBUIT offers customised, high quality and innovative solutions in UV (since 1976) and solvent/conventional inks.
We at Sign & POP World got a chance to interact with Caroline Bonnafoux, the company’s marketing manager, who was here in India to explore the business proposition for the digital inks that Encres DUBUIT manufactures and supplies across the world. While speaking to us, she covered quite a few points including the company’s plan to grab a pie in the Indian wide format digital inks market. Here are the edited excerpts to follow:
How has been Encres DUBUIT’s presence in India?
We aim to market our high-quality digital UV inks in India. For now, we are selling our screen-printing ink here, which goes through our two distributors – one each in Mumbai and New Delhi. But that is a completely different market. These two distributors, therefore, only provide the technical support for screen-printing inks.
We actually wanted to show our brand to the digital printing players in India with some of whom we have really good contacts. That is why, before coming into India full fledged, we wanted to show our potential customers that we are really involved in this market and want to offer them the high-quality digital UV inks.
What made you explore India for your inks?
We first came to the New Delhi-edition of Media Expo in September 2018. Now, we are here in Mumbai for the same reason i.e. to promote our digital UV inks. India is changing at a rapid pace and the market is switching over from solvent and eco-solvent to more eco-friendly, UV inks. We gathered lot of insights from China for digital UV inks, and got to know about very rich trade terms with India.
We then decided to visit Indian market to show our potential customers who we are. Usually, we are known for UV screen printing inks, for which we had a huge market in the 90s when we used to supply the same, majorly to electronic industry. But then suddenly CD industry collapsed, which adversely affected our inks’ market. In the meantime, we got to know that the market for screen printing still exists in India. However, we are more focused to push our digital UV inks here.
Other than India, in which all countries is Encres DUBUIT selling its inks?
Encres DUBUIT is strongly established in the international markets and is making its presence felt actively. We have three plants: in France (Paris), Spain (Barcelona) and China (Shanghai), three distribution centers (Publivenor in Belgium, DUBUIT America in Chicago, and the Middle East) with technical support all over the world. Other than that, Encres DUBUIT is also represented by its distributors in more than 50 countries around the world.
This is because, at Encres DUBUIT, the expertise lies in high-technology inks and coatings dedicated to the industrial printing market, ranging from simple visual communication to industrial marking and the use of functional inks. The company caters to the needs of global printers worldwide in sectors as varied as visual communication, packaging, cosmetics, automotive, electronics industry, and the like.
Which all inks are you offering to your Indian customers?
We have a variety of inks that can be used in Indian wide format industry addressing the needs of a gamut of printing applications. For instance, EVOJET 3000 UV digital ink is specially designed for printing on treated glass with Evoprime H5099. Our EVOJET Chinese Red and EVOJET Fluo-Y and M are the UV LED inks that can be used as red spot colour with our EVOJET 1700 and is suitable for visual communication on a wide variety of media. For all these inks, pigment particle’s size is less than one micron that allows a better definition and a good drop control which in turn helps reducing a lot of satellite effects.
Who are your target audience in India?
For us, the most important are the machine manufacturers. We can’t individually go and meet each end user. We have one person, Sunil Pillai who is working for us here in Indian market. He is based in Pune and can travel all along India. We wanted to remain visible to the Indian machine manufacturers along with the suppliers who are sourcing machines from overseas as they may become our future partners. As of now, we are in conversation with a couple of machine manufacturers and we look forward to materialise the same.
Why do you think that Indian printing industry is ready for Encres DUBUIT?
In India, it is the initial stage as UV machines have just entered. For us, it is the right time to enter and introduce our quality inks to Indian machine manufacturers. So far, our digital UV inks are compatible with Ricoh Gen IV & V, KM, Xaar, Spectra, and Kyocera printheads. We are quite confident about our future here but in the meantime general elections are scheduled after which the economy will be decided and accordingly, we will take our decision. We hope that in the second semester, things would speed up and we will be in a position to decide. By the end of the year, we need to know about our future steps, and further movement.
India is a bit different. What would be your strategy to start with?
Worldwide it’s a huge market and each country is very different. Like for instance, we are selling our inks in China that too very specifically and to some select customers only; we can follow the same strategy here in India. However, we have observed that the market here is not only lacking on the usage front, but also on the technical knowhow about UV inks.
So, how will you address this issue?
We know that India is new in UV, and therefore, end-users need to be trained about UV technology. We want them to know how our inks can add value to the final output thereby enhancing their bottom lines. This, we will also try conversing to the equipment manufacturers.
A complete printer comprises three major components i.e., the printhead, the machine and the ink. So, the print head manufacturer, machine manufacturer and the ink manufacturer will have to come together to find a solution to satisfy the end-users. No stakeholders can take the risk of making end-users unhappy. So, everybody has to work in the same direction to find out solutions, acceptable to everyone. For us, the line of action will be around know-how, technology and services.
What gives you an edge over other ink suppliers in India?
We are very confident of our quality as it is being manufactured in France, Europe. We are hopeful that we may get advantage of it in India also. Our ink is UV and we are one of the first manufacturers to introduce UV in screen printing technology. We have the knowhow about UV inks in digital and hence, we would offer the highest quality as we have.
In France, we supply our screen-printing inks to the cosmetics and perfume industry, which has high requirements with very high expectations on inks’ quality. We take extra care if we find anything wrong with the product, and we don’t allow it to go out of the factory unless we rectify. We need to be strict with the European regulations as there is no choice but to follow.
The Chronology of Growth
1970: Creation of Encres DUBUIT in Aulnay-sous-Bois, near Paris, France.
1976: Following a major research program, the first UV inks in Europe were successfully printed on a plastic bottle
1976: Creation of DUBUIT America
1988: Creation of Tintas DUBUIT, Spain
1990: Expansion of Encres DUBUIT in Mitry-Mory, near Paris
1994: Encres DUBUIT obtains ISO 9001 certification
2000: Encres DUBUIT is listed on the Paris Stock Exchange
2003: Creation of DUBUIT Shanghai, a manufacturing facility in China
2011: Opening of a new factory in Shanghai
2015: Office and technical support to Lebanon to cover the Middle East and Africa