Fujifilm will introduce global double-digit price increases in printing plates, chemicals and inks, but by introducing lower variable surcharges, the impact on British printers will be minimized.
In a global statement issued this morning (April 28), Fujifilm stated that it will increase the prices of its offset printing plates, processing chemicals, and analog and digital inks globally.
It said: "From May 1, 2021, prices will rise by double digits and will vary by region and product."
It cited the "surge" in the prices of raw materials such as aluminum and silver, as well as freight costs, and added that "the company can no longer sustain the increase in costs."
According to today’s official notice, the group’s regional operations will contact customers this week to detail how the new surcharge will affect them.
Andy Kent, general manager of Fujifilm UK, said that although this is a global growth, there are regional differences. His UK team hopes to contact customers as soon as possible. He also clarified that although the official statement stated that the increase will take effect from May 1, this does not include the 30-day notice period in the UK, which means that the surcharge will actually take effect from June 1.
Although he does not want to know the details before contacting all customers, Printweek understands that the only double-digit growth faced by UK printers is for certain processing chemicals, and the surcharge is roughly equivalent to about 0.26p per square meter of 0.3 mm board.
However, Kent confirmed that customers who signed up to the Fuji Platesense program will not be affected by the increase.
He added that for non-Platesense customers, the surcharge will still be offset by the increase in the value of aluminum scrap.
"So, although they may see price increases, this is not a cost increase."
Kent said that the UK's surcharges will also be reviewed regularly to reflect the changing input costs, which are closely related to oil prices and the global economy and transaction volume.
"We have not raised prices for many years, we have been absorbing the price increases, but our hands are forced," he said.
"We are definitely not the first to announce a salary increase, and it may not be the last. This is a very difficult time for the entire industry."
He also emphasized that although chemicals and inks are also affected by a similar spiral increase in raw material prices, there are also problems with the supply side, which affects costs, on the grounds that its ink manufacturing business in Broadstairs, Kent has suffered. More than 30 force majeure notices.
Prior to this, Agfa announced a similar announcement in March, which led the Belgium-based group to implement a 5% to 10% growth on April 1.
In the UK, Agfa’s analogue and digital offset surcharge per square meter effective on April 19 is equivalent to 0.23p per square meter. Agfa UK stated that the surcharge will be reviewed quarterly.
Earlier this month, Kodak also introduced a surcharge, which will continue to be reviewed. Printweek learned that the Kodak surcharge is 0.2 pence per square meter.
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