Home SPECIAL STORY Scenario of Printer Consumables Market in Eastern India

Scenario of Printer Consumables Market in Eastern India

by Imaging Solution Bureau

Eastern India is a huge market for printer consumables with unlimited opportunities for providers, however, it is difficult to penetrate or make a sustainable profit. Challenges include lack of awareness among consumers about quality and cost-effectiveness aftermarket products, non-recognition of aftermarket by the government departments, low-quality goods from china flooding the market, etc, obstacles created by the OEMs remain challenges to the aftermarket industry. Imaging Solution presenting here the insights and viewpoints, of some of the aftermarket industry stalwarts of the Eastern India, about the regions consumables market, its challenges, uniqueness, diversity and more.

Technochem’s business well in Kolkata city as well as in WB, Orissa and Jharkhand

Founded in 2008 in Kolkata and led by its Proprietor, Dhiren Desai, Technochem Enterprises is a provider of a wide range of imaging consumables, including inkjet inks, powders, toner cartridges, printer machine parts, etc under their brand name JJ. Technochem is also a distributor for the imaging consumables of Jet Technologies and JetTec, ITDL brands. They also do printer and copier rental business. Besides their distribution business, they also have a retail shop in Kolkata. Dhiren Desai comments, “Our customers, mostly DTP workers and others, come from Kolkata city and the West Bengal state and some from Orissa and Jharkhand. We are growing at an annual rate of 30%. For us, imaging market is good at present. About 20% of our business comes from our own brand JJ and the rest 80% comes from selling other consumables of other brands and rental business. ITDL, Jet Technologies, and Jet Tec brands are selling well in our areas of operations. We have channel strength of 150 partners spread across the three states –WB, Orissa and Jharkhand. Our man selling points are good relationships with our partners and customers, good quality and reasonable price. On the color front, inkjet inks are selling better compared to toners due to the cost-advantage of inks. Next year, we want to open one more retail shop in Kolkata in a different locality, in addition to our already existing retail shop. We are looking forward to good business in the coming years.”

Black Bull is doing well in Eastern India despite Market Slowdown

India Cartridge Engineers, led by its Proprietor, Rajesh Agarwal, was founded in 2011 in Kolkata. Their brand name is under which they sell a wide range of imaging consumables including compatible toner cartridges, powders, toner cartridge parts, printer machine parts and inks for inkjet printers. They sell consumables for leading brands and their models like HP, Canon, Samsung, Ricoh, Epson, etc. Rajesh Agarwal comments, “Our brand is doing well. Though we are based in Kolkata, we sell in Jharkhand and Orissa states, in addition to West Bengal and Kolkata city. We are growing at an annual rate of 20%. Compared to last year, this year market has been slow throughout eastern India region. We hope it will improve next year. Our main selling points are good quality and comfortable price. Color ink is selling better than color toners. After the color inks have become a hit, the demand started shifting to color inks from color toners. We buy products from other quality-proven importers in India. We have color inks for all the leading brands like Epson, Brother, HP and Canon. Another trend we have noticed is, with compatible cartridges coming at cheaper prices and with better quality, refilling is decreasing. And we expect this to continue further in the coming years. For future, we want to focus on doing better whatever doing at present.”

Whitelight Brand is doing well in Spite of Market Slow Down

Founded in 2015 and led by its Proprietor, Jitendra Bothra, Disney Import (India) Co. is a Kolkata-based provider of imaging and office equipment products. Under their brand name, Whitelight, they provide a range laser printer and copier consumables including laser & color toner powders, laser printer cartridges, photo paper, copier parts, HP and Epson printer spare parts like paper feed roller, waste pad, pick up roll, scanner with head cable, belt, pipe, laminator consumables, etc. They also sell lamination machines, lamination pouch film and currency counting machines under the brand name Disney. Jitendra Bothra shares, “Our customers come from all over India: about 20% from West Bengal and 80% from other states including Punjab, Assam, Bihar, Jharkhand, Orissa, Tamilnadu, Kerala, Telangana, Karnataka, etc. Our main selling points are good quality, attractive prices and excellent after-sales-service. Next year, we want to add spiral binding machines, PVC card, paper cutters, etc to our product-line. We do not deal in color consumables. For our brand and products, we see imaging market has been good, though there has been a general slowdown in the market. We will continue to add more products to our portfolio and improve services.”

IT Valley Focuses a Lot on Providing After-Sales-Service in Post-Warranty Period

IT Valley, founded in 2006 and led by its Proprietor, Rajarshi Das, is a Dubrajpur (of Birbhum district of West Bengal) based provider of IT products, peripherals and imaging consumables and services, including PCs, laptops, projectors, printers, copier machines and printer consumables. They sell printer consumables like inkjet inks, printer toner cartridges, toner powders, printer machines parts and also undertake printer and copier repair services. Rajarshi Das comments, “We maintain good quality and above that we focus a lot on after-sales-service. We take care of customers’ issues after they cross the warranty period. We also maintain cordial relationships with our customers. Earlier (2006-13), we grew at an annual growth rate of nearly 30%, but now (2014-19) the annual growth rate has been around 15% as the market has slowed down. Dubrajpur is a small town and our customers are mainly govt offices, bank branches, post office, police station, etc. Per month we sell nearly 15 printer machines and 2 copier machines. On the color front ink-tank printer machines are selling well, not many laser printer machines. In future, we want to focus more on improving our service.

In Berhampore, after GST Launch Profits have come down, though Volumes are Increasing

Systech is a Berhampore (West Bengal) based provider of imaging consumables. Their product portfolio includes toner powders, toner cartridges, inkjet inks, printer machine parts, accessories and printer repair services. Systech is a distributor of itone toners. They also sell inks of Jet Cartridge, OEM toners and OEM cartridges and others printer consumables. Sushanta Halder, Proprietor of Systech, comments, “In this part of the country, toner refilling is almost coming to an end, and compatible cartridges are selling well. We are distributors for itone toners and itone quality is very good and it is selling well. Even for compatible cartridges, margins have become very small. After GST, business has come down a lot in this part of the country. GST may be good for big brands and big traders, but for small traders like us, after GST implementation, business has dropped a lot. Even survival has become difficult. Overall the market demand is good and is increasing, but margins have come down to very low levels. We do printer repair services also in Berhampur area which are doing well and the repair services help us to compensate our business overall, as there is little profit in selling consumables. We are thinking of adding new products other than imaging to our operations, otherwise it is difficult to survive selling only products and consumables.”

Yash Infotech Records Good Growth for their Copiers and Consumables Business in Kolkata

Yash Infotech founded in 2001 in Kolkata and led by its Proprietor, Anand Kumar Khedwal, is into selling copier machines of Canon, Kyocera and HP brands. Yash Infotech is a distributor for the entire range of Growlam products for the Kolkata region. They also sell copier machine parts. Anand Kumar Khedwal shares, “Currently market is not so good in general, but for us it is OK and we are doing good business growing at an annual rate of over 30& to 40%. We are selling about 10 to 20 copier machines a month, but the demand fluctuates from year on year. We recently took distributorship of Growlam products which are selling very well and we are expecting good demand for Growlam products in the coming years. Quality products, good relationship with customers and affordable prices are our main selling points. In the near future, we want to focus on whatever we are currently doing and do better. No plans to add new products. We are contented and optimistic about our operations and look forward to good business in the coming years.”

Easyfill brand is Selling Very Well in Bihar, Jharkhand and West Bengal

Easyfill, a Patna-based professional provider of printer consumables, was established in 2014, is led by its Proprietor Abhay Kumar and managed by Bablu Kumar. Under their brand name, Easyfill, the company has been focusing on providing high quality printer consumables including black & color laser toner cartridges, inkjet cartridges, toner powders, OPC drums, PCR rollers, magnetic rollers, toner chips, blades, dotmatrix ribbon, copier cartridges, copier toners, copier parts, bulk ink and CISS systems. Abhay Kumar shares, “Currently growing at an annual rate of 15%, our main areas of operations at present are Bihar, Jharkhand and West Bengal in the eastern India and also Nepal. Our consumables are mainly for monochrome printers. Color usage is not that much in this part of the country at present but is expected to increase in future. Our Ranchi branch is doing very well where we are making a wide range of products available compared to our competitors so in Jharkhand region, our brand and products are selling very well. On Ranchi, we are going to be one of the top compatible brands. In Patna, market is bit dull now, but in Jharkhand and West Bengal, our brand Easyfill is doing very well. We have limited sales in Assam, but the demand is increasing, Next year, we want to focus more on Assam and West Bengal markets.”

Most of Dolphin’s Business Comes from Providing Products & Services to Government Sector in Jamshedpur

Dolphin Infonet Solutions, founded in 1999 and led by its Proprietor, Amitava Chakraborty, is a Jamshedpur-based provider of IT and imaging products in the Jamshedpur town. They also provide system integration services on a medium scale to the SMEs and small offices. For copiers, they provide only OEM consumables and for printer they provide OEM and also compatible consumables of Lapcare, Frontech and Doel brands. Amitava Chakraborty comments, “We are a medium-scale provider of complete infrastructure solutions particularly to the banks and government offices, including IT and imaging products and system integration services in the Jharkhand region, from which 90% of our business comes. We sell copier machines of Kyocera and Canon brands and we also undertake copier repair services for those we provide infrastructure. As for copier consumables, we provide only OEM consumables, no compatibles. Printer machines we deal in HP and Canon, for which we provide compatible consumables of Frontech, Lapcare and Doel brands. Quality, trust and good relationships are our selling points. We want to concentrate on whatever we are currently doing and establish our business within Jamshedpur.”

Digital Copier planning to expand the operations

Digital Copier Systems, founded in 1999 in Dibrugarh, Assam, by its Proprietor, Raju Bhattacharjee, is a provider of copier machines of Konica Minolta, Kyocera and Sharp bands and also OEM and compatible copier consumables like toners and toner cartridges for these brands. Raju Bhattacharjee comments, “With A4 printer prices coming down, they are becoming household items and the demand for copiers has come down a lot as people are no longer going to jobbers. Earlier, we used to sell a good number of copier machines, but for the past 3 years, we have been able to sell hardly 4 copier machines a month, so our business has come down significantly. For future, we are planning to expand our operations into providing printer machines and consumables which are in great demand.”

M P Enterprises Plans to Distribute High-End Copier Machines in Future in Silchar and South Assam

M P Enterprises, founded in 2003 and led by Nabarun Paul, is a Silchar (Assam) based local distributor of Sharp Copier machines and Sharp OEM consumables. They also provider UPS and Inverters. Nabarun Paul comments, “We are a distributor of Sharp brand copiers and OEM consumables for the southern Assam region. We deal only in Sharp brand copiers, no other brands. We have about 4 dealer-partners under us in south Assam. We sell about 10-15 black copier machines a month and we are growing at an annual rate of 5-10%. Color copiers do not sell much in this part of the country. Market has been dull for the past six months and we hope it will improve early next year. We provide good service and maintain good relationship. In future, we want to sell high end copier machines and focus on whatever we are doing at present.”

Itek Solutions Leads in Providing Cutting-Edge Printers that Print on Cotton and Jute

Kolkata based Itek Solutions is a provider of cutting-edge digital print solutions, under their brand name Itek for printing on jute, juco, cotton and matting jute. Their machines are small in size and cost, compared to similar machines in the market, but deliver higher output. Sushil Kumar Agarwal, CEO, Itek Solutions, shares his company’s product portfolio, business policy and market strategy in interaction with Imaging Solution magazine. Sushil Kumar comments, “Our Itek printing machines are made by our Chinese manufacturer (ODM) who is reputed to maintain high quality and reliability standards. And we get the machines manufactured to specially suit the environment and working conditions in Indian, in such a way they give the customers financial benefit and professional satisfaction. Most of the customers for our machines are SMEs, medium textile brands, jute bag manufacturers, etc.” “Our Itek machines are highly-costly effective and durable that helps the users save a lot in terms of money as space. We well-trained and qualified technical personnel to give the top class service to the customers who purchase our machines. The demand for our machines in increasing year after year and we are expecting more demand in the coming years.” Sushil Kumar adds. Regarding their future plans, Sushil Kumar briefs, “We will continue to focus on our Itek digital printing machines that print on cotton and jute. In just 3 years after launching, we received a overwhelming response from the market and we expect more in the coming years. We will launch more models in the coming year.”

Refilling is Decreasing Due to Increasing Compatibles Usage: Nicco Infotech

Founded in 2007, Nicco Infotech is a Durgapur (West Bengal) based provider of imaging consumables and IT products. Led by its Proprietor, Tapas Das, Nicco’s product-line of imaging consumables includes copier machines, laminators, lamination consumables, spiral binding machines, laser toners, laser toner cartridges, inkjet inks, etc; and IT product-line includes CCTVs (i-Ball) and Projectors. They also so undertake copier repair services. They sell laser printer cartridges of ProDot and toner powders of ITDL.Tapas Das comments, “With the invasion of A4 printer machines of the markets, the demand for copiers has drastically dropped and also the refilling segment is shrinking with the increasing usage of compatible cartridges. On the color side, due to cost-effectiveness, color inks are selling better than color laser toners. Now, we are focusing more on providing printer consumables (in addition to copier consumables) and want to expand our IT portfolio to sustain our business.”

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