IMI Europe Digital Printing Conference

INKJET market and technology Advances

19-20 September 2018

Novotel Barcelona City Hotel, Barcelona, Spain

Download the conference brochure here

Download the conference brochure here

The IMI Europe Digital Printing Conference is the flagship strategic conference for the inkjet industry, trusted as a primary source of high value information by senior executives and commercial managers for more than 15 years. This two-day event includes the following elements:

  • Market briefings from leading analysts

  • Updates and views from industry pacesetters

  • Perspectives from key end users

  • New technology introductions from inkjet innovators

As well as formal presentations, the conference programme includes panel sessions covering key topics, with the panels comprising and chaired by industry leaders.

Represented companies:

IT Strategies * Sensient * Janoschka * Xaar * Gallus * BHS Corrugated Maschinen * Screen GP IJC * INGEDE * Hewlett Packard * Alchemie Technology * InPrint * Interprint * Memjet * Neenah Coldenhove * Archipelago Technology * Heidelberger Druckmaschinen * Ritzi * Marabu * Steinemann

Additional Benefits


The IMI Europe Digital Printing Conference gives you the opportunity to meet senior executives from within the inkjet industry as well as from companies using the technology or developing it for their use. With two networking lunches, an evening reception and additional refreshment breaks, there is ample opportunity to meet with key people.

Sponsor Exhibits & Forum

Event sponsors will have their products and technology on display in the breakout area, and the Sponsors' Forum enables you to hear short presentations from sponsors on their company and latest news. If you are interested in becoming an event sponsor, please visit our sponsorship page.

IT Strategies Market Report

All delegates will receive a free copy of the latest "The Numbers" Market Report by IT Strategies. Generated from their worldwide digital printing industry model, it provides an ongoing source of market information based on primary research.

Strategic Advisory Board

The conference programme of topics, panel discussions and presentations are determined by the Strategic Advisory Board of industry luminaries whose expertise covers a wide range of technology and applications in digital printing. Strategic Advisory Board members are as follows:

  • Ramon Borrell, Chief Technology Officer, Xaar

  • Marco Boer, Vice President, IT Strategies

  • Montserrat Peidró, Senior Vice President - Head of Digital Print Business Unit, Heidelberger Druckmaschinen

  • Denis Poncelet, Marketing & Sales Development Director - Inks Europe, Sensient Imaging Technologies

  • Mike Willis, Managing Director, Pivotal Resources

Conference Programme

WEDNESDAY 19 September 2018

08:30-09:30 Registration
09:30 Morning session begins

Where is the demand for digitally printed packaging?
Marco Boer, Vice President, IT Strategies

Digital printer manufacturers are rushing in to develop digital packaging printing systems, looking at digital printing of packaging as the unexplored, bright frontier for growth. With so many equipment suppliers rushing in, where are the “right” areas for growth? Is it converters who target large, medium, or small brands? Or is it the brands themselves that need to be convinced of allowing a disruptive new technology to be introduced into their supply chain? This presentation explores potential opportunities for digital printing of folding carton, corrugated, and flexible packaging.


Digital inks for packaging
Denis Poncelet, Marketing & Sales Development Director - Inks Europe, Sensient Imaging Technologies

Why do brands have more concerns for packaging than for labels? Is there a visual colour difference when mixing conventional and digital in traditional merchandising? How is food compliance truly guaranteed? Can we use the same substrates for conventional and digital? How digital allows special effects and do we have a chance for an affordable opaque white solution? Can we avoid a primer, and what changes in gloss, haze, rub, COF and gluing, sealing, filling speed as well as recycling results from a new digital ink? This presentation explores the limits today for folding, premium corrugated and flexible packaging.


Digital printing in the packaging supply chain - overview and challenges
Alexander Janoschka, CEO, Janoschka

Digital Printing has the potential to transform the graphic supply chain for the packaging industry. Quick turnarounds, high flexibility, on demand delivery and single unit production units are the key arguments for a technology change. What are the essential challenges today in a multi-process environment? Which markets are the most promising for the near future? This presentation gives some insights into today’s world of the graphic supply chain for the packaging industry.


Inkjet printheads for digital printing of packaging
Ramon Borrell, Chief Technology Officer, Xaar

Piezo inkjet printheads have become the dominant technology for digital printing in industrial and commercial applications. The trend is to continue gaining share against competing technologies. However even in a single application area, such as packaging, the diversity of requirements may demand the use of a range of different printhead architectures. This is the reason why there is a growing diversification of printheads, not only from different suppliers, but also in each supplier portfolio. In that regard the Xaar portfolio has expanded to cover three major architectures, aimed at specific tasks. Embellishment of packaging materials, whether labels or primary packaging, can be achieved digitally at acceptable speed with ultra high productivity printheads capable of delivering enough fluid to create textured surfaces, Braille text, deep opaqueness or rich metallic finishes. On the other hand, combined high print quality at high speed has become possible with thin film printheads, which also deliver industrial level life, usability and cost of ownership.

12:30-14.00 Lunch
14:00 Afternoon session begins

Digital label: Past, present and future
Michael Ring, Labelfire General Manager, Gallus

  • Lessons learned by Gallus/Heidelberg and what we had to do to overcome some of the fundamental limitations of inkjet at 1200 dpi

  • A review of the digital marketplace and how it has developed over the last 5 years in terms of number of manufacturers in the space

  • The possible impact that new low cost digital label solutions could have to the market and ultimately brand owners


Integrating an inkjet printer into corrugated board manufacture
Maximilian Mark, Product Manager Digital Print, BHS Corrugated Maschinen & Dr Nick Campbell, Project Manager, Screen GP IJC

  • BHS’s view of the benefits of inkjet printing for corrugated board manufacture

  • Why printing inline with the corrugator is important

  • The requirements that printing inline with the corrugator imposes on the inkjet printer

  • System features to meet those requirements

  • Current progress on the project

  • Next steps




Panel Session: Digital packaging solutions - is inkjet ready?
Topics to include:

  • Industry viewpoint

  • Beyond CMYK

  • Food compatibility

The panel will be chaired by Denis Poncelet, Marketing & Sales Development Director - Inks Europe, Sensient Imaging Technologies, and include industry experts from the conference Strategic Advisory Board and conference presenters.


Is inkjet still a challenge for paper recycling and deinking?
Axel Fischer, INGEDE

Printers want to go green. Some think, water is green, just because it is water? It isn’t always. Water-soluble inks in printing are not necessarily environmentally friendly. Cheap dye-based inks dissolve during the recycling process, staining the fibre rather than leaving the mix in a process designed to remove hydrophobics and ink particles. Deinking has soap bubbles rise to the surface, pulling hydrophobic ink particles up and away. Here dyes and inks with hydrophilic small particles make a print behave like a red sock in a washing machine – staining all the fibres in the system, not just the one they are intended to colour. Better systems are available: the presentation will show how to do it.


Multi Jet Fusion - Behind the scenes
David Ramirez, Senior R&D Engineer, Hewlett Packard

This talk will give an overview about HP’s strategy in the 3D printing industry. With the objective to disrupt the $12T manufacturing market, HP’s Multi Jet Fusion can print strong functional parts faster than other 3D printing technologies, leveraging many years of inkjet development.


Precision digital coatings
Dr Alan Hudd, Director and Co-Founder, Alchemie Technology

  • Digital materials science overview

  • Technologies for digital precision coatings of functional materials

  • Challenges of applying precise coatings in a digital world

  • Deposition using liquid and powder digital technologies

  • Typical industrial applications

  • Future trends and predictions

18:20-19:00 Sponsors' Forum

Hear short presentations from the event sponsors.

19:00-21:00 Networking Reception

Join us for wine, beer, canapés and good company!

THURSDAY 20 September 2018

09:00 Morning session begins

Industrial Inkjet 2018: Crossing the chasm, or stuck in a ravine?
Marcus Timson, Co-Founder, InPrint

Since 2014, the industrial inkjet community has been eagerly anticipating when the tipping point will occur when the next big market for industrial inkjet will enter the euphoric state of transformation and revolution. But arguably this hasn't occurred. Yet. This presentation draws upon hundreds of conversations, survey results, data and observations. It makes some suggestions for the future health of industrial inkjet and answers the question: Is industrial inkjet crossing the chasm? Or is it stuck in a ravine?


Striving for excellence in digital single pass décor printing: Status report & industry perspective
Robert Bierfreund, COO, Interprint

Interprint runs one of the biggest and fastest industrial digital printing presses in the world. Since 2015 the company gained experience in the field of digital printing using inkjet technology. As of now the 2018 production volume already exceeds the output of the complete year 2017. This growth leads to digital specific challenges and new topics to be solved. Thereof one of the key factors ensuring further success is stabilizing technical topics to ensure a smooth 3-shift production. Overall the digital printing benefits are not easily harvested, but are seen by Interprint as a potential game-changer.


Advancements in page wide thermal inkjet technology
Don Allred, VP Packaging, Memjet

Memjet’s first technology platform introduced page wide compact inkjet capabilities to a range of markets and is a leader enabling late stage customisation for packaging and labels. Memjet’s Gen 2 platform advances the technology with significantly longer printhead life, higher speeds, nozzle redundancy, pigmented inks and a modular design to enable rapid integration up to and over 2.5 meter print widths. The technology is ideally suited for OEM products that target mid- and high- volume print applications. This paper will discuss the status of our entry level technology and provide several examples of applications that can be enabled with low cost equipment, while also providing a technology overview of the Gen 2 inkjet platform.


The sustainable development of dye sublimation papers and trends within the digital textile printing industry
Gijsbert Harmsen, Senior Sales Executive Performance Materials, Neenah Coldenhove

Sublimation is experiencing a tremendous growth in the digital textile printing world and it does not slow down in the near future. The market demands faster turnover times and smaller order minimums. Paper manufacturers are challenged to come up with a digital sublimation transfer paper collection that is able to meet these market requirements in an environmentally friendly and sustainability way. This presentation will focus on Neenah Coldenhove’s developments in the portfolio of digital dye sublimation transfer papers in a way that it preserves our precious environment.

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Powerdrop: helping inkjet go further, faster
Guy Newcombe, CEO, Archipelago Technology

We in the inkjet world can greatly expand our application space and markets by dividing the roles of decoration and function. Cartonboard, flexible packaging and décor all require levels of ink adhesion and image integrity that are hard to put into a single ink.  Single ink solutions are expensive and require additional layers in the substrate.  This presents a problem to customers who are looking to make valuable products with low cost ink and reliable machinery.

Archipelago’s Powerdrop technology solves this problem.  It can apply primers to aid adhesion and coatings to give image integrity.  Combining inkjet and Powerdrop enables end users to get all the benefits of digital together with the robustness their products require.   In this talk, Guy Newcombe, Archipelago’s CEO, will describe the major opportunity that can be addressed by this approach and go on to describe the latest developments and applications of the Powerdrop technology.

12:40-14:00 Lunch
14:00 Afternoon session begins

Panel session: Industrial Inkjet - progress and blockers
Topics to include:

  • Décor

  • Textiles

  • Direct-to-shape

The panel will be chaired by Marcus Timson, Co-Founder InPrint, and include industry experts from the conference Strategic Advisory Board and conference presenters.

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Direct-to-shape printing solution
Thomas Wittmann, Wittmann Consulting, on behalf of Ritzi Lackiertechnik and Heidelberger Druckmaschinen

The presentation will discuss today's requirements for personalisation and short series in production items. The Heidelberg Omnifire solution - inkjet technology with a unique value proposition for on-demand on-object printing - will be discussed. A real usage case will be presented for Ritzi, a provider of interior decoration parts for the main automobile brands.

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Watch out labels! Here comes single pass inkjet direct-to-container
Holly Steedman, Product Manager Digital Inks, Marabu

Marabu has been involved in the development of inkjet inks for Direct to Container from the start of this evolving market. Marabu has a strong history in this area coming from their screen printing products.
Marabu have developed inks from the dispersion up to enable them to be part of these challenging applications. Working with our machine partners, we achieve the necessary stringent requirements for the final product.
We discuss the challenges we faced in our ink developments and our success stories. In particular the achievements in direct to glass. One of the most challenging substrates for inkjet printing. Discussion points include wash resistance and withstanding product-manufacturing processes.


Digital print enhancement
Jürgen Stocker, Product Manager, Steinemann

We will talk about digital print enhancement for sheet-feed and reel-to-reel printing systems. Digital print enhancement has strengths and weaknesses compared to analogue print enhancement. Which analogue enhancement applications can be realised today with digital technology? What are the big strengths of digital print enhancement? What are the big weaknesses of digital print enhancement? What will be the future of digital print enhancement systems?

17:00 Conference ends