The UK's online printing market is like a double-edged sword, which is both profitable and challenging.
Challenges and opportunities coexist with the UK network printing market
Let me talk about challenges first. This challenge mainly comes from competition in other countries. Flyeralarm, Onlineprinters, Cewe, and Unitedprint are the four major German network printing companies. These four companies have two things in common: First, they are leaders in the German-speaking region's Internet printing market; Second, they are located at the heart of the European Union, and their development opportunities are naturally greater than those of other European countries.
In 2017, the share of online print products in the overall printing market in the German-speaking region was 25%-28%, while that in the UK was between 10%-15%, which means that Germany is superior to online print sales. United Kingdom.
At present, major German network printing companies and companies in other European regions are vigorously expanding their activities in the United Kingdom by establishing national domain names, separating brands, owning their own production facilities and sales outlets. This is bound to have an impact on the UK's domestic network printing companies. However, some Internet printing companies in the UK are also investing heavily, and the investment has increased year by year, and even achieved double-digit growth rates. At the same time, their investment scope has also expanded to the United States. Among them, there is also a huge business opportunity.
The proportion of the British printing market and its network print
The UK network printing market has one feature: it is more decentralized. There are fewer practitioners in the UK that really participate in the printing industry than in Germany, and a large number of SMEs and similar suppliers are more concentrated.
In order to give you a clearer picture of the situation in the UK printing market, we look at a set of data: The British Federation of Printing Industries (BPIF) pointed out that the UK printing industry had sales of more than 15.9 billion euros in 2016, which made the UK become a European country. The second largest printing country after Germany. Therefore, the UK's online printing market has sufficient development potential. Industry analysis believes that by the end of 2022, the proportion of online printing in the UK printing market will increase from the present 10%-15% to 25%-30%.
Below, this article will detail some of the high-speed, fast-growing online printing suppliers in the UK and Ireland. (Note: Including Ireland, because the main market for Irish online printing suppliers is not only their own country, but also the United Kingdom. And vice versa, some UK network printers also provide products to Ireland.)
Several active British local network printers
Moo is a UK-based internet printing company with sales of approximately 63 million euros in 2017, an increase of approximately 40% year-on-year.
Headquartered in London, Moo has 400 employees and is renowned for its outstanding design products and high print quality, and it also has operations in the United States.
Bluetree Design&Print is less mature than Moo but still important. In 2017, sales were approximately 23 million euros. The company is located in the northern part of the UK and operates two print shops, route1print.co.uk and instantprint.co.uk.
In order to achieve the goal of sales of 34 million euros in 2018, the company has invested heavily in technology and infrastructure (more than 23 million euros) in the past few years.
Bluetree has entered the lucrative American market with its inexpensive, fast-turnaround printing products from the Instantprint brand. Among the printing companies studied, Moo and Bluetree have the leading growth potential.
As mentioned earlier, German network printing suppliers have already begun to consolidate their position in the UK printing market and are expanding their operations in the United Kingdom through the addition of operating points and acquisitions. A year ago, the German Onlineprinters Group acquired Solopress, a printing supplier headquartered in East London, to become one of the largest and fastest online printing suppliers in the UK.
More than 80% of Solopress customers require an overnight delivery. This requirement is more common in western Europe than in the middle. The speed of delivery determines the success or failure of the UK network printing market.
In 2017, Solopress’s sales amounted to 24.2 million euros, and future sales are likely to increase further. Because the group will further expand investment in the field of network printing, there is another point that the company has recently installed more presses.
The supplier growth rate mentioned below is "moderate", that is, those companies whose growth rate exceeds 10%. Here we look at Tradeprint and Precision Printing.
Tradeprint has been part of Cimpress since 2015 and is only responsible for mass customization in the UK, with sales in 2017 of around 12 million euros.
Although Tradeprint still has competition in its own camp, its sales in the past two years have increased by 20% and 14%, respectively, indicating that Tradeprint is providing effective services for dealers and white label buyers.
The same customer-centric strategy is also being implemented in Precision Printing and its web brand Where The Trade Buys (WTTB). Since the relaunch of the brand's online sales, its target sales have reached 6.9 million euros, accounting for one third of the total sales of Precision Printing (19.5 million euros).
In addition to WTTB, Precision Printing also operates other online print shops, which are growing at a rapid pace and have recently grown at a rate of 13%. This growth trend will be more significant this year and next year, and the growth rate is expected to exceed 30% or even higher. This is based on acquiring hundreds of new customers and having sophisticated and efficient online printing operating mechanisms. In the future, Precision Printing and its brands will certainly play a greater role in the UK online printing market.
to sum up
Over the past few years, some local suppliers in the UK online printing market have achieved significant growth in sales. From this point of view, the UK network printing market has great potential.
It is also worth noting that whether the forthcoming Brexit will attract more online printing companies from Germany and other parts of Europe to the UK for acquisitions. At the very least, local printing professionals are using this opportunity to expand their industries to other countries. It can be expected that there will be some degree of integration in the UK's printing market, which means that each printing company's sales will increase.
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