Mark Andy was one of the key exhibitors at the first-ever Labelexpo Mexico trade show, which attracted many visitors from Latin America and proved to be a great opportunity for the promotion of a variety of Mark Andy technologies. This included the company’s toner-based Digital Pro 3 hybrid press that gave live demos throughout the event and drew many discussions with printers and converters from the region.

The LATAM market has been a very successful business area for Mark Andy in recent times, and visitors to the booth were mainly interested in new concepts among hybrid solutions, following a growing number of Mark Andy toner- and inkjet-based presses installed in the South and Central America region. In addition to Mark Andy representatives for LATAM, business partners were also available at the booth to welcome visitors from Mexico, Brazil, and other countries of the region.

“Our sales success in the LATAM market shows a strong and continuous growth in this part of the world in recent years,” said Tom Cavalco, Executive Vice President at Mark Andy. “2021 was a record year for us, and we finalized many important contracts last year, too. These included the first hybrid presses delivered to different countries.”  

Cavalco notes that the first Labelexpo Mexico confirmed the huge potential from LATAM printers and converters, as well as their growing interest in modern, highly advanced technical solutions because of the need to upgrade or replace existing machines.  

“As a press manufacturer of different printing techniques, including conventional flexo and hybrid, both toner- and inkjet-based, we have a lot to offer and are keen to participate in as many interesting business cases as possible,” Cavalco said.

Growing demand for hybrids

Mark Andy demonstrated a toner-based Digital Pro 3 at its booth. This press represents the entry-level segment in the company’s hybrid range.  

Cavalco underlined how hybrid technology has become increasingly popular worldwide, with LATAM being no exception: “A few years ago, we delivered our first 17-inch Digital Series HD in the region to one of our long-term flexo users. This was followed by other installations in the region, and we have enjoyed a constant year-on-year growth of hybrids delivered to the LATAM area.”

Labelexpo Mexico confirmed this market trend, with Mark Andy having many discussions with current and potential customers who are considering investment and a switch to a digital-based press, equipped with additional finishing and embellishment options.  

LATAM benefitting from geopolitical changes

The printing industry in Latin America is benefitting from the key geopolitical changes that have occurred in recent years.  

“Many brand owners started so-called ‘near-shoring,’ which means bringing their businesses and manufacturing plants closer to the target market and the end-users. The entire LATAM region, especially Mexico, is benefitting from this global change,” Cavalco noted.  

As a result, the demand for different printed products, including labels and packaging, especially highly embellished, sophisticated ones, has started to grow significantly. Printers and converters are now receiving requests for more advanced products like shrink sleeves, IML, flexible packaging and RFID tags. Hence, they are being forced to modernize and upgrade their machines.

Cavalco said the success of Labelexpo Mexico highlights the changes occurring in LATAM and the huge potential capacity of the market.

“We have observed a growing importance of e-business in the entire region, followed by a growing demand for packaging and labels,” he said.  

According to official data, Mexican online sales grew by 23% in 2022 compared to 2021, and have tripled since 2019. The outlook for the label market is also very promising.  Predictions are for a 5.5% growth between 2021 and 2026, and a doubling of the number of label printers and converters since 2013.  

“This is great news for us as a manufacturer of narrow-web presses,” Cavalco added.

Local support in sales, service and finance

Cavalco underlines the importance of adopting an appropriate sales and support strategy for the LATAM region based on its local requirements and market specifics: “We are building our structure in Latin America on the successful model we used in Europe, where we significantly increased market share after moving our activities closer to the customers.” 

As in Europe, local background knowledge of both personnel and technology is very important to LATAM customers.  

“We employ only those people who have rich experience and market knowledge of sales and technical support in the region. Our trading activities are supported by a finance company that employs fluent Spanish speakers, which is crucial for direct contact with LATAM customers,” Cavalco said.

Labelexpo Europe coming soon

The Mexico-based event was another Labelexpo Global Series trade fair supported by Mark Andy to present its technology at its own booth, or via local business partners.  Following successful Labelexpos in Mexico, Thailand, India, and the United States, the company is very keen to meet its European-based customers in Brussels this September.