Mimaki continues to be a leading printer manufacturer with an extensive product portfolio. Our technologies serve multiple markets, including Sign Graphics, Industrial UV, Textile and 3D. Despite the past couple of years, we still see growth within these markets, and likewise our technologies have continued to grow and develop with it.
The end of this year concludes the end of my first six months within the Mimaki Europe leadership team. Myself, alongside fellow long-standing Mimaki employee Mark Sollman, were recently appointed to a management position. Working together with Danna Drion, we have enjoyed a successful few months as a new management team, despite some residual challenges following the pandemic.
With the pandemic continuing to disrupt businesses and persistent logistical issues with overseas imports, this year has presented many obstacles both within and outside of the printing industry. These challenges within the supply chain saw an accelerated need for localized production and on-demand digital printing. Mimaki was able to support businesses with this increased demand and will, of course, continue to do so with our continually expanding digital technology offering.
This year our customers have continued to innovate and succeed with Mimaki technology, encouraged and supported by our virtual events and online workshops. These events were designed to aid customers in creating new business opportunities and to help them get the most out of their existing Mimaki equipment. We saw firsthand how our customers have adapted their operations to suit the needs of a volatile market during these difficult past two years, which led to many successfully bouncing back, or even maintaining and growing their business.
Sign Graphics has seen particular growth this year, especially with UV printing. We’ve held the number one market position in the sign graphics sector for two consecutive quarters, mainly because of the higher adoption rate of UV LED technology, which is over twice that of the total market. We expect to see this trend continue in the coming year due to the efficiency, sustainability and diversity of applications that these printers offer. The Mimaki UJV100-160 for example allows users to print on a wide range of materials, including metallic foil, fabric, and heat-sensitive media, demonstrating the diversity of applications for UV LED.
While the economic and logistical situation surrounding the pandemic continues to be unpredictable, we have high hopes for the coming year. Mimaki will continue to support all of the core markets in 2022 and beyond, and we expect to see particular growth in the UV market as previously mentioned. We also expect to see further adoption of our 3D printing technology, due to our new end-to-end solution, the 3DUJ-2207 full-colour 3D printer combined with 3D Print prep Pro software and 3DCS-322 post-processing unit, being both cost-effective and high-quality, opening the market up to more model-making businesses.
Another trend we anticipate through 2022 is a higher demand for automation, an exciting prospect as it allows for Mimaki printers to work alongside other technologies in automated production workflows. As events begin to migrate from virtual to in person, this year we attended FESPA and Formnext and we look forward to even more tradeshows returning to our calendar in 2022. We have enjoyed developing our digital showroom and will continue to do similar virtual initiatives in the new year, but we can’t wait to demonstrate our newest, innovative technologies at more in person events.
Comments from Arjen Evertse, General Manager Sales EMEA, Mimaki Europe