Why is Heidelberg a bit like a giant aircraft carrier? For one thing it is the one of the largest vessels in the graphics industry.
Sheer size may be why Heidelberg has taken a long time to adjust its direction. However now that the change has been made the good ship Heidelberg is steaming ahead at full speed. Under its revitalised leadership the company is financially more secure and is positioning itself to better support both its new digital customers and prospects, as well as its legacy analogue printing community. It was announced earlier this year that Heidelberg is now structured as a digital business. The Heidelberg Digital Technology (HDT) and Heidelberg Digital Business and Services (HDB) divisions were established on 1st April, 2017.
More than sugar coatings
Heidelberg recently announced that it is taking over Fujifilm’s coatings and pressroom chemicals operations in Kruibeke, Belgium to serve the EMEA region. The acquisition includes a production site in Reutlingen, Germany and together these sites employ some 70 staff, all of whom will be transferred to the Heidelberg operation. Dirk Henrich Heidelberg’s head of trade press states that “We welcome the new colleagues from the corresponding Fujifilm operation onboard of with Heidelberg. Further to this there are no massive changes planned in this area.” The Kruibeke business currently accounts for approximately €25 million in sales, an amount that trebles Heidelberg’s sales of pressroom chemicals and gives it a market share of around 10 percent in Europe. This puts Heidelberg in the top four suppliers, alongside Kodak and Agfa, as well as Fujifilm.