The IDC Worldwide Quarterly Large Format Printer Tracker found that worldwide large format printer (LFP) shipments grew 3.9% year over year in the second quarter of 2016 (2Q16), while hardware revenue grew by more than 7%.
“On a worldwide basis the second quarter is often the slowest quarter of the year for large format printer shipments. If that holds true then 2016 should be a very good year for the large format printer market,” says Tim Greene, research director, US Large Format Printer Tracker. “Recovery in technology categories like eco-solvent and toner-based printers have run counter to some of the market trends over the past few quarters to create a bit of a surprisingly strong Q2.”
Segment Highlights
•    Shipments in the large format CAD/Technical printer market segment grew by more than 7.5% in 2Q16 compared to 2Q15, and are now up by over 4.5% for the first half of 2016. Shipment growth in North America and the Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) more than offset lower sales in Asia/Pacific (excluding Japan) through the first half of the year.
•    On the large format graphics side total shipments were almost 2% lower in 2Q16 compared to 2Q15, but revenue actually grew a modest 0.8% over that time as the market shifts towards more productive large format graphics printing systems.
Vendor Highlights
The top five suppliers worldwide in 2015 all kept their place through the first half of 2016. The top five suppliers, in order, were HP Inc, Canon (when combined with Oce), Seiko Epson, Roland DG, and Mimaki.
•    HP grew both its share of shipments and share of revenue in 2Q16 compared to 2Q15 based on the continued strength in HP Latex, PageWide XL, and FB-series printers. Some of the growth in revenue share is attributable to the aggressive discounting that other vendors are engaging in as they compete against HP.
•    Canon maintained its number two position among large format printer manufacturers in 2Q16 with over 22% of total large format printer shipments when Canon’s aqueous, UV, and toner-based printer systems are combined.
•    Epson, the number three supplier of large format printers worldwide, lost some share in terms of shipments, but is seeing slightly higher share in revenue due to the changing mix of large format printers the company Is selling. Epson has re-launched some of its large format eco-solvent lineup early in 2016 and is starting to see these products drive more revenue.
•    Roland DG continues to be the leader in the “durable graphics” large format printer segment and maintained its position as the fourth-ranked supplier of large format printers worldwide in terms of total shipments in 2Q16.
•    Mimaki was the number five supplier of large format printers worldwide in 2Q16 and continued to grow its share of the market with still more new large format printer models and with the signing of new distributors in major regions.