Interview: Dilek Hayırlı
Micol Gamba, Product and Marketing Manager at EFI Reggiani, said: “In Western economies inflation remains high, but gradually falling, so consumers’ confidence is expected to grow. Digital textile printing output is expected to grow in 2024, and with more strength in the second half of the year.“
EFI Reggiani recently launched the revolutionary and fully sustainable Reggiani ecoTERRA pigment printing series, the super high-speed EFI Reggiani HYPER and Reggiani BOLT XS direct-to-fabric printing solutions, and EFI Inèdit end-to-end digital textile workflows. Focusing on sustainability, the company continues to develop solutions that will bring its customers to high productivity and profitability levels in its new facility equipped with state-of-the-art technology products, which it moved to in 2023.
We interviewed with EFI Reggiani Product and Marketing Manager Micol Gamba for the special issue of ‘Italian Textile Machinery Industry’. Gamba evaluated the year 2023, gave information about new products and made important statements about ITM 2024 Exhibition.
How was the year 2023 for your company? Can you evaluate it in terms of your production volume, orders and export markets?
2023 has been a busy year, full of both new opportunities and some challenges. Despite a post pandemic recovery in 2021, the traditional textile market began to experience a decline in orders in the second half of 2022, trend that continued into the first half of 2023, mainly due to slowing demand imputable to a complex economic situation, very high inflation and interest rates, rising energy prices and other geopolitical factors which affected some of our principal foreign markets like Turkey and Pakistan.
However, actions have put in place, and the company strategy to overcome this moment has focused on total value and environmental sustainability with differentiated machines, inks and parts/services that will be the cornerstone for the growth of our business in the future as well.
2023 brought us great satisfactions too. First of all, it was the year of ITMA Milan, the most important exhibition in our sector, that in spite of the market conditions was a great opportunity to meet existing and new customers and show to the market the latest innovations in our portfolio.
Also, 2023 marked the move to what is now our new home in Comun Nuovo, a completely new, state-of-the-art facility of 20.000 sqm, which represents an opportunity to get quickly over this period.
“We Installed New EFI Reggiani ecoTERRA Installations in Europe, Turkey, USA and Uzbekistan in 2023”
Efi Reggiani’s recently launched machines such as ecoTERRA, EFI Reggiani HYPER and Reggiani BOLT XS offer many advantages to the customer in terms of water, energy and chemical usage. How did these products respond in the market?
EFI Reggiani’s commitment is improving sustainability across the industry, that is why we will keep a strong focus on developing complete green processes and innovative solutions covering all the textile workflow to reduce consumption and minimize the environmental impact: it is an approach that combines quality and production efficiency with respect of the environment.
EFI Reggiani ecoTERRA is the most recent achievement in this area: an all-in-one solution for water-based pigment printing that requires no ancillary equipment for pre- and post-treatment since the entire printing process is happening inside the printer itself. By significantly reducing water, energy and chemicals consumption in the overall process, customers can now obtain a truly sustainable, direct-to-fabric printing solution thanks to EFI Reggiani ecoTERRA. All this combined with the most comprehensive pigment line up in the industry: a full line up of six models, including a 340 printing width, with speeds ranging from 150 to more than 700 m2/hour, backed up by proven EFI Reggiani technology and service.
2023 has seen the installation of new EFI Reggiani ecoTERRA at customers in Europe, Turkey, USA and Uzbekistan. The very first customer to invest in the EFI Reggiani ecoTERRA solution has been Colourama, a textile company established in 2005 and located in Lodz, which shared with us how ecoTERRA printer is well positioned to take advantage of prominent market trends, specifically on-demand printing.
The second big area of focus for us is moving mass production to on-demand: producing volumes in real-time and with increased operational efficiencies is a big ask also to make sure our customers can be competitive in a global marketplace. High productivity combined with high quality delivering best-in-class-OEE is a trademark for us: we have reconfirmed that with EFI Reggiani HYPER and the new EFI Reggiani BOLT XS printers, backed up by EFI Reggiani’s new proprietary end-to-end digital printing workflow and the latest enhancements to Inèdit digital textile software, together with EFI Reggiani QUERY, the user-friendly, advanced data analysis tool to measure printer performance, keep track of real costs per meter, and monitor water and energy consumption.
“Our Acquisition of Turkish Company BDR Facilitated Our Access to Pakistan, India and Bangladesh Markets”
In 2019, you acquired the BDR company in Turkey? Has this acquisition been effective in expanding EFI Reggiani’s presence in the Turkish market and other nearby geographies?
Part of EFI since 2019, BDR has continued developing inks by expanding and increasing its capabilities on ink technology. The acquisition has expanded EFI Reggiani’s digital reactive ink supplies and supported the company’s presence in key markets. This advantage made it easier to have access to the world’s most important textile markets, such as Pakistan, India and Bangladesh. EFI Reggiani is a leading technology provider with a wide range of industrial textile inkjet printers using water-based inks. BDR also offers reliable products delivering high quality with lower cost in digital printing. By combining the product portfolios of EFI and BDR, we help our customers achieve new levels of sustainability, productivity and profitability.
“Pigment Ink Market is Expected to Grow at Double Digits by 2030”
What are your expectations about the world textile sector and especially the digital textile machinery sector in 2024?
As new and ongoing financial, geopolitical and other challenges weigh on consumer confidence, textile markets in the US, Europe and China are facing headwinds, requiring suppliers, brands and retailers to bolster contingency planning, among other measures. In Western economies inflation remains high, but gradually falling, so consumers’ confidence is expected to grow. Even though the future seems fragmented, digital textile printing output is expected to grow in 2024, and with more strength in the second half of the year. Pigment inks are a green solution and, since sustainability confirmed as compelling requirement to compete, their use is expected to accelerate and grow double digit between now and 2030.
“ITM 2024 will be a great opportunity to see new interesting things in action”
As a company, do you have new investments and new machine developments on your agenda in the near future? Can you tell us about your 2024 targets?
Innovation is one of the pillars of EFI Reggiani strategy, which reflects the constant investment in R&D and new technologies development. In our view, digital textile printing will become more integrated, automated and sustainable over the following years, and it is why we have taken a stronger approach to delivering best-in-class and end-to-end solutions which address both sustainability needs and Industry 4.0 manufacturing.
In 2024, we will continue to work towards sustainability with a strong focus on pigment, but also to deliver to the market new solutions, which can offer both high quality and astonishing performances. ITM will be a great opportunity to see new interesting things in action.
“The Turkish market is always interested in innovation and quality, which encourages us to work with passion”
As Efi Reggiani, how are you preparing for the ITM 2024 Exhibition? How do you think the ITM Exhibition will accelerate the textile machinery sector, which has stagnated in the last period?
We’re thrilled to confirm our presence at ITM 2024! Turkey is a key textile market, and our presence in the country dates back to the Seventies thanks to loyal and valuable local partners as well as the presence with our offices in Bursa. Even though the Turkish market has suffered a lot in the last period due to inflation, we are optimistic for this edition, and we truly believe ITM 2024 will be fullof exciting news. We will primarily focus on the high productivity, high reliability and high accuracy that industrial customers need, while keeping focus on making the industry more sustainable.
The Turkish market is always interested in innovation and quality, so the rapid adoption of more sustainable digital technologies in the country encourages us to keep on working with passion in this direction.