Monday, June 30, 2008

Sivakasi printing industry in decline

Business Standard article talks about how while India has seen 300% growth in the printing industry, Sivakasi's growth has been less than 15%. From a high of 60% market share of the Indian printing, the small souther Tamil Nadu town has now merely a 20-25% share.

Sivakasi for long has been the printing capital of Tamil Nadu. It still continues to be, though if one believes the BS article, Sivakasi is fast losing out. More corporate investments have probably not happened there. I can see a lot of solid investments in printing machinery and infrastructure happening in Chennai. Other state capitals have also shown significant investment in this space.

In Chennai alone, there is massive excess capacity in printing because of RR Donnelly setting up a massive printing facility in Nokia SEZ in Sriperumbudur. Till that point in time, Nokia were giving a lot of jobs to various Chennai printers, but now they get all the printing done within the SEZ.

Sivakasi's leading printer Srinivasa Fine Arts may still be growing at the rate of 30-40%. They seem to have significant overseas orders. However, other, smaller printers in Sivakasi may be facing trouble. The only hope for a lot of them is to open up marketing offices in Chennai and other state capitals, aggressively seek out jobs and then get them executed in their Sivakasi facilities.

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