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Agfa $9 million bid to get back into digital printing

Thursday, 22 January 2004
By Print 21 Online Article
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The Euro 6 million deal marks a re-entry for the company into digital printing. Agfa had two previous involvements with digital printing; with the Xeikon-based Chromapress, which it terminated in 2000, and with digital inkjet as a development partner with UK-based Xaar for its Page-Wide Array, which it also cancelled.

“This acquisition fits in our growth strategy for Graphic Systems,” said Albert Follens, member of Agfa’s Board of Management and General Manager of Graphic Systems. “dotrix will allow us to take a position in the market of digital printing and to gain larger access to industrial printing niches such as decoration, packaging and security printing.”

dotrix employs approximately 75 staff and its turnover in 2003 is estimated at close to 5 million Euros. “We are excited to be part of the world’s largest pre-press company, said Rob Haak, CEO of dotrix. “End-users will benefit from new product offerings and extended services, which will lead to increased customer satisfaction. With improved time-to-market and Agfa’s recognized brand name we expect to rapidly expand our customer base.”

dotrix’s printing solutions consist of a high-speed full-colour industrial digital press (the.factory – the dot factory) based on inkjet technology and UV inks, a raster image processor for driving the digital press and workflow software to support the different applications.

“We fully recognise the value of dotrix’s innovative developments in inkjet technology”, added Jan Van Daele, head of Agfa Imaging Solutions, “We are planning to add the experience and skillset of the dotrix staff to our own internal expertise in imaging. Consistent print quality requires a balanced integration of print engine, printing ink and substrates. We believe that this acquisition will give us a maximum synergy to offer cost-effective digital printing solutions in rapidly growing applications, such as packaging, label printing, decoration, object printing and security.”

Founded in September 2001, dotrix NV is a spin-off from Barco NV, located in Ghent. As a start-up company, dotrix has developed prepress solutions for security and decorative printing applications along with industrial printing workflow systems in various market segments.

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