Debbie Thorp takes time to reflect on the tumultuous year that was 2020 and reviews the shape of things to come in 2021 in conversation with the team at FuturePrint.
Looking back on the extraordinary year that was 2020, Debbie Thorp of Global Inkjet Systems was keen to focus on the positive. She explained: “Back in March 2020 we did not know what the impact of COVID would be on the business, but we soon realised that the inkjet industry is very resilient.” The sudden ubiquity of video calls was an unexpected advantage, offering the business increased engagement with customers when compared with standard phone calls.
Debbie also found an optimistic stance on the absence of events in 2020, saying: “With so many events going virtual it has been a challenge for providers to create genuinely valuable content. Some have certainly done this better than others – but overall an increased virtual presence has been a positive experience and we expect to continue longer term. But we also look forward to the return of “live” events, as nothing quite matches that face to face interaction.”
With 2020 now behind us, what can be expected in 2021? Debbie predicted: “Packaging continues to develop strongly for inkjet – with embellishments and flexible packaging growing – and then there are all the more “hidden” industrial applications where inkjet is part of larger manufacturing processes. I say “hidden” because this is not a one size fits all market – systems are often customised and the relationship with numerous partner companies often requires considerable project management.”