The IMDA In-Mold Decoration Assn. just released results from its Spring 2011 Short Shot Business Survey. The real-time market study was meant to gauge the momentum and growth of companies that have a vested interest in in-mold labeling of packaging (IML) and in-mold decoration
of durable products (IMD). While only six questions long, the survey reveals some important aspects of
the IML/IMD business climate for today and tomorrow.
Who responded to the survey?
Fifty percent were label printers, 20% were material suppliers (label films, inks, etc.), 15% molders, 9% equipment suppliers and 6% brand owners.
What are the target markets for your products?
The largest percentage—38%—was packaging. Durable products were 31%, and consumer products were another 28%.
Why does your company pursue IML/IMD?
One third said their customer demands it, while another third said that IML and IMD is a market differentiator. Other reasons given included durable decorating method—14%, economical decorating method—11%, and aesthetics—7%.
How much of your business is
IML- or IMD-related?
Four out of 10 said that IML or IMD is more than 30% of their business. About 45% said it’s only 10% or less of their sales, and 14% said it accounts for between 10 to 30% of sales.
How did your IML/IMD sales compare to the previous quarter?
While 30% of respondents said their sales were unchanged from the third quarter of 2010, 20% reported an increase in sales of up to 10%, and 43% saw increases of more than 10%. Only 7% reported a drop in sales.
How were your requests for quotes (RFQs) for future IML/IMD business?
A fourth of all respondents said their RFQs were unchanged, but another fourth said they increased by up to 10%, and more than one third said these requests increased by more than 10%.
My Thoughts: This IMDA survey reveals some good news when it comes to the strength of the economic recovery—at least for this segment of the label industry. First, six out of 10 respondents saw their sales climb at the end of 2010. Then, for this spring, almost two-thirds reported new RFQs for future business. There certainly appears to be some sustained market growth for IML and IMD products. And that is broad-based including the printers/converters and their material and consumables suppliers. It also might go further to positively impact the capital-equipment makers of printing presses and label-application systems.