Konica Minolta Increases Stake in MGI Digital to 42.3%

Konica Minolta Increases Stake in MGI Digital to 42.3%

“The company believes that demand for industrial printing will shift more to on-demand than ever before,” says Konica Minolta, announcing an additional investment in France-based MGI Digital Technology (MGI), a manufacturer of digital decoration printing machines.

MGI’s digital decoration printing machines use 100% inkjet heads manufactured by Konica Minolta and offer products including foil stamping and embossing. MGI is also expanding into the field of printed electronics and other industrial printing, said a statement from Konica Minolta:

“In the previous Medium Term Business Plan, SHINKA 2019, Konica Minolta positioned Industrial Printing business as growth business. During the Covid-19 pandemic, demand has temporarily stagnated in some areas of the industrial printing sector. Over the medium to long term, however, the company believes that demand for industrial printing will shift more to on-demand than ever before, and that the shift from analogue to digital printing will increasingly accelerate in order to respond to this change in demand,” the company said.

“Furthermore, the technologies cultivated in this area are expected to expand the scope of application from simple printing to goods to functional printing. Based on that, from a medium-to-long-term perspective, Konica Minolta will continue to aggressively develop its business in the industrial printing domain,” the company said.

“In recent years, digital marketing has shifted into mass customization by changing contents aligned to target audience and customers. The company believes that this trend will spread to professional and industrial printing sectors, and that as demand increases for digital printing technologies toward personalized printing, the digitization of post-processing will become increasingly important. Particularly, it is essential to expand the lineup of digital embellishment machines that make printed materials more appealing, and it is crucial for Konica Minolta to deepen the alliance with MGI, the first company in the world to commercialize digital embellishment printing machines, steadily forming the market for digital decoration printing since then,” said the company.

“At drupa exhibition held in Germany in 2016, MGI made a technological showcase of its ALPHAJET, a system that enables integrated printing, decoration, and post-processing that can also be printed on corrugated products. MGI is about to become the industry’s first high-value-added digital printing solution to meet the demands of the packaging printing industry for smaller lots and customization. In order to drive DX (digital transformation) at packaging printing sites, Konica Minolta will strive to provide increase the value and establish a strong position in the market by effectively launching ALPHAJET, taking advantage of the customer contact it has accumulated through its global sales network and capabilities. Furthermore, in the future, Konica Minolta aims to provide the ultimate digital system that can automatically complete all of the pre-process, printing, and post-process to the final product,” the company said.

“In addition to colour printing and decoration printing, Konica Minolta has been considering the provision of value in the field of functional printing in the future, such as printed electronics and chipless RFID, positioning them as development of businesses that society needs. CERADROP, a subsidiary of MGI, is completing laboratory-level printed electronics, including cooperating in functional printing studies at several well-known universities with advanced material sciences. Through this increase of stakes in MGI, Konica Minolta will accelerate the development of material technologies and production technologies for the early commercialization of functional printing, in addition to the synergies of the results that both companies have accumulated to date,” the company added.

Konica Minolta and MGI formed an equity and business alliance in January 2014. “In 2016, Konica Minolta made a full-scale entry into industrial printing field. By maximizing printing value through digital printing technology, as well as transforming its printing production process improvement and printing supply chain, the company has created markets and expanded the scale and scope of its business. In particular, as the label and packaging market is experiencing an acceleration in high-mix, smaller-lot printing through digitization, Konica Minolta has positioned it as a market of significant importance in which demand will continue to increase going forward,” the company said.

“Label and packaging printing has a great deal of room for digitization in the post-printing processes of varnish coating, laminating, foil stamping, and die cutting. By adding MGI’s partial varnishing, foil stamping, and other digital-output devices to its product lineup, Konica Minolta has increased its presence in the industrial printing market. Over the past four years, Konica Minolta’s industrial printing business has approximately doubled in size,” the company explained.

On September 30, 2020, Konica Minolta acquired an additional stake in MGI, bringing the stake together with the existing stake to 42.3%. MGI, which has 204 employees, was founded in 1982 and has its headquarters in Fresnes, France. MGI revenues in 2019 were 68 million Euros.

Chris Fernando

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