African Printer Markets Sees an Overall Declines Due to Currency Fluctuation

The latest insights from International Data Corporation (IDC) revealed that printer shipments to Africa saw a year-on-year (YoY) decline in both volume and value during the first quarter of 2015 (1Q2015). Due to the ongoing currency volatility across the region, total printer shipments fell to 470,000 units, valued at $190 million, down 16.6% and 12.7% YoY, respectively.

As a result of successful vendor promotions in the color inkjet field and consistent demand from the SMB segment, Nigeria outstood the market by achieving a year-on-year growth in both volume and value, despite the currency fluctuations.

Roberto Alunni, research manager for imaging, printing, and document solutions at IDC Middle East, Africa, and Turkey, said, “IDC believes that despite the year-on-year decline seen in Q12015, Africa will continue to offer strong growth potential across all the hardcopy technologies in the medium to long term. The growth will be led by businesses, as regardless of their size, reliance on physical documents continues.”

Overall inkjet shipments to Africa decreased to 210,000 units, with a corresponding decline in value to approximately $21 million. Inkjet devices aimed at the small office/home office (SOHO) segment were one of the few to show robust growth among inkjet devices priced below $100.

Laser shipments declined 8.2% and 10.3% respectively in volume and value for Q1 2015, to just under 250,000 units worth $162 million. The overall decline in laser market was mainly caused by the decline in the entry-level A4 segment, which focused on the retail channels and is most easily affected by currency volatility. On the other hand, demand remained stable for higher speeds and within the A3 segment.

Serial dot matrix (SDM) shipments dropped considerably from a year ago to just over 9,500 units, with corresponding decline in value to approximately $6.50 million. Newer and more efficient technologies are responsible for making the SDM market shrink.


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