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The colour management segment in the global textile industry is a reasonably small one with only a few big players. Datacolor is one out of them. Sanjay Paranjape, sales director, Datacolor, shares insights on this industry in an exclusive interview with Fibre2Fashion.com
What percentage of the global colour management industry can the textiles industry claim for itself?
There are no independent industry studies on the colour management market but these are some of the top-level assumptions that we use:
1. The overall colour management industry is US$ 0.5 to US$ 1.0 billion worldwide.
2. Major industries served are graphic arts and printing, auto exterior and refinish, textile and apparel, paint and coatings and plastics including masterbatch, compounders and processors. Other industries include pharmaceutical, food, ceramic and cosmetics.
3. There are a small number of big players. These include X-Rite, Datacolor, Byk, Konica Minolta, Hunter and hundreds of smaller hardware and software companies that operate regionally.
4. In the textile and apparel segment, we estimate that there are about 6,000 dye mills that use colour matching instruments and software, and Datacolor has a dominant market share --- greater than 70 per cent.
Where are your manufacturing units located?
Our manufacturing units are primarily in China, with some post-manufacturing processes in the United States of America.
Which are your most developed markets and which markets are coming up in a big way?
The United States of America and Europe are the most developed, with strong growth in Asia and the Middle East. The strongest markets are those that emphasise the use of technology to control manufacturing.
Is there any R&D going on with a new colour or shade?
Development of colour palettes is always inspired by the colours that exist in the world around us. There are no 'new' colours. The challenge is to reproduce those colours on specific fabrics using dyes and processes that produce quality products which meet the end-user's performance specifications without harming the environment.
The colour industry is said to be a major pollutant. What new sustainable and environment-friendly technologies are coming in?
Datacolor's software for dye recipe formulation is designed to produce the best possible recipe on the first attempt, minimising the need to dye multiple trials to match a shade. Datacolor's production process software intelligently calculates chemical and process requirements to optimise dye processes. Both applications are designed to save time and to ensure that optimum concentration of chemicals is used.
Natural colours do not have the fastness of artificial colours. Is there any R&D in this field?
Datacolor is in the business of helping our customers measure colour through the use of spectrophotometers and software for colour measurement and recipe formulation. As such, we have no direct impact on identification of natural dyes that meet specific performance properties. We can, however, tell the user whether or not the colour meets numerical tolerances for acceptability.
What has been your growth percentage in the last two years?
Our business growth was 9 per cent in FY 2013 and 14 per cent in FY 2014.
Published on: 27/08/2015
DISCLAIMER: All views and opinions expressed in this column are solely of the interviewee, and they do not reflect in any way the opinion of Fibre2Fashion.com.
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