India Printer/MFP Shipments Slow, but Inkjet Sees Gains

The printer/MFP (hardcopy) market in India recorded shipments of 0.85 million units in first-quarter 2019, declining 4.1 percent year-over-year, as per the latest IDC Asia/Pacific Quarterly Hardcopy Peripherals Tracker , CY2019Q1. IDC says the decline was primarily because of a slowdown in both consumer and commercial demand.

However, despite a slowdown in demand, inkjet-printer shipments grew 5.6 percent year-over-year, led primarily by Epson. This growth was led by ink-tank inkjet printers which recorded year-over-year growth of 21.2 percent, the highest growth in the last five quarters.

While the overall laser-printer market declined 11.9 percent year-over-year, the copier segment grew by 19.4 percent year-over-year, and recorded the highest shipment ever. IDC says the copier market grew on the back of strong demand from government and government’s continued tight monitoring of the refurbished copier market.

Johri, Market Analyst, IPDS, IDC India, commented: “Weak consumer demand, observed in fourth-quarter 2018, continued well up to the middle of first-quarter as well, and this largely affected the overall inkjet market’s health. Demand from SMBs and SOHOs was also on the lower side due to the credit issues they continue to face with banks affecting demand for laser printers. Despite the scheduled government elections, the consumption from the government remained steady, owing to it being the last quarter of the financial year. After the election dates were announced on March 10, 2019, with the Model Code of Conduct coming into effect, government demand decreased as multiple government deals were put on hold.”

Overall Hardcopy Market in India:

Top-Three Brand Highlights:

HP Inc. (Excluding Samsung) maintained its leadership in the hardcopy market in India with a share of 37.7 percent, while its shipment declined by 7.6 percent year-over-year. The decline was primarily led by the inkjet segment, which declined by 11.6 percent year-over-year, due to muted demand from the consumer market even though multiple end-user and channel schemes were active. In the inkjet segment, HP retained its second position with a share of 24.6 percent. On the copier side, HP shipments grew by 15.7 percent quarter-over-quarter, due to strong demand from the corporate and government segment. In the laser segment (excluding copiers) HP maintained its leadership position, capturing more than 60 percent of the market share.

Epson remained at the second position in the overall hardcopy market in India by clocking 13.1 percent year-over-year growth and capturing 31.4 percent of the unit market share. It also continued to hold its leadership position in the inkjet segment while increasing its unit market share to 56.1 percent, thus increasing by 11.6 percentage points. The growth came primarily on the back of its new models, especially the L3110 and L3150, along with multiple lucrative distributor offers. Epson’s gains were mainly due to SMBs preferring ink-tank inkjets over expensive laser printers as it remains the preferred choice in commercial segment when it comes to ink-tank printers.

Canon recorded a year-over-year decline of 10.5 percent while maintaining its third position in the hardcopy market in India and capturing 16.1 percent unit market share. The decline in Canon’s shipment was largely due to an inventory correction exercise undertaken due to the excessive stockpile in previous quarters. In the copier segment, Canon continued to lead the market with 24.0 percent market share. The Indian government’s stricter regulations on the refurbished market coupled with increased demand from government helped Canon in maintaining its dominance in the copier market.

IDC’s India Market Outlook

“Post first-quarter 2019, market conditions are expected to slightly improve due to summer holidays followed by back-to-school programs leading to improvement in consumer demand. Ink-tank printers will continue to gain traction and partially make up for the decline in laser-printer shipments as well as ink-cartridge printers. Post elections, government demand is also expected to return to normal giving boost to laser copier market,” says Nishant Bansal, Research Manager, PCD & IPDS, IDC India.

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