Assuming it clears the legal hurdles, the purchase of Jetrion from the Flint Group by Electronics For Imaging (EFI) is being keenly watched among European OEM partners and other inkjet vendors. This attention reflects a wider interest in single-pass inkjet technology for labels and packaging, following some important technical developments with CMYK printheads and UV curable inks.
Jetrion becomes an independent division of EFI just at the time when the company introduced its full-color 4000 Series to the market. It’s the sort of product that EFI will want to exploit to fulfill its declared strategy to make a bigger splash in the industrial inkjet market. It is already known widely throughout the European graphics industry for its print servers and print management systems, as well as Vutek wide format inkjet printers and inks.
EFI’s entry into a specialized sector of the industrial inkjet market follows the earlier purchase by Fujifilm Dimatix of Spectra’s piezoelectric printhead business. The two events may not be entirely unconnected, given that Fuji and EFI compete in similar graphics markets. In themselves these deals reflect some large-scale activity in the UK, France and the USA involving companies like Domino-Amjet, Impeka, Konica-Minolta, Epson, Xaar, and HP. Each is busy rolling out new products or OEM ancillaries for full color labeling and packaging applications with variable content capability.