More to be done for a robust foundation for another century

Komori looks forward to its centennial in 2023

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Komori
Komori sheetfed offset press

“Under the Fifth Medium-Term Management Plan, we have made steady progress toward fostering an organizational culture supporting medium- to long-term growth through the plan’s three key initiatives, namely, ‘transforming the business structure, achieving business model innovation in sales activities and transforming the profit structure.’

Nevertheless, I believe that there is more to be done to secure a robust foundation for the next 100 years.” – chairman Yosiharu Komori, president, and CEO Satoshi Mochida.
On 28 January 2020, Komori Corporation announced its revised operating results forecasts for the current financial year ending on 31 March 2020 based on the performance forecasts revealed on 28 October 2019. The reasons for the revision of projections were, in Q3, a growing number of businesses in Japan took a cautious stance towards investment due to a sense of anxiety over the economic downturn. Reflecting this, Komori’s domestic sales and orders fell significantly short of its estimates for facility upgrades associated with offset printing presses.

The North American market also took a cautious stance toward investment due to an uncertain outlook for government trade policies. In Europe, demand was less than robust, reflecting such issues as Brexit and an economic downturn in Germany.

Furthermore, markets in Greater China were negatively affected by U.S.-China trade tension and the resulting depreciation of the Chinese yuan, which, in turn, caused some businesses to postpone investment. Komori also saw the postponement of some prospective projects in other regions and failed to secure the expected volume of orders. Overall, Komori’s sales in overseas markets were sluggish.

Taking these factors into account, Komori expects that consolidated net sales for the fiscal year ending 31 March 2020, will fall short of its previous forecast. On the earnings front, Komori forecasts that operating income, ordinary income, and profit attributable to owners of the parent will fall short of its previous forecasts, reflecting the impact of the decrease in net sales. Dividend forecasts, however, remain unchanged from the figures disclosed on 28 October 2019, although all estimates are based on management assumptions.

Komori in India

Since setting up its own subsidiary in India in a joint venture with its distribution partner several years ago, Komori has expanded its service operations, including customer training. Its very significant market share of multicolor sheetfed press installations has been eroded in the past year with fewer press installs and by the much-improved performance of Heidelberg India.

Nevertheless, Komori India has sold a heatset web offset press to Thomson Press in Faridabad which is owned by the Living Media group. Thomson prints India Today and several other group magazines apart from being a major commercial and book printer and exporter. The heatset press will, however, be installed in the next financial year and will be the first new Komori heatset press at a printer that, in the past, purchased several heatset webs from Harris-Heidelberg-Goss and Mitsubishi.

The Covid-19 pandemic led to the country-wide lockdown on 25 March 2020. It will be two years tomorrow as I write this. What have we learned in this time? Maybe the meaning of resilience since small companies like us have had to rely on our resources and the forbearance of our employees as we have struggled to produce our trade platforms.

The print and packaging industries have been fortunate, although the commercial printing industry is still to recover. We have learned more about the digital transformation that affects commercial printing and packaging. Ultimately digital will help print grow in a country where we are still far behind in our paper and print consumption and where digital is a leapfrog technology that will only increase the demand for print in the foreseeable future.

Web analytics show that we now have readership in North America and Europe amongst the 90 countries where our five platforms reach. Our traffic which more than doubled in 2020, has at times gone up by another 50% in 2021. And advertising which had fallen to pieces in 2020 and 2021, has started its return since January 2022.

As the economy approaches real growth with unevenness and shortages a given, we are looking forward to the PrintPack India exhibition in Greater Noida. We are again appointed to produce the Show Daily on all five days of the show from 26 to 30 May 2022.

It is the right time to support our high-impact reporting and authoritative and technical information with some of the best correspondents in the industry. Readers can power Packaging South Asia’s balanced industry journalism and help sustain us by subscribing.

– Naresh Khanna

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