Recently, Fashion Print had an exclusive interview with Mr. Qin Guosheng, Chairman of Zhengzhou Hongsam Digital Science and Technology Co., Ltd. As an emerging environmentally friendly technology, digital printing has been used in clothing, home textiles, automobile decoration, advertising, personalized customization and other fields, bringing more personalized experiences to many industries. As a leading enterprise in the digital printing field, Hongsam Digital has been committed to the research, development and application of digital inkjet technology since its establishment, and has made great contributions to the promotion and development of domestic digital printing technology. From the perspective of an inkjet ink manufacturer, how does Hongsam Digital look at the current market changes, and what unique insights does it have about the future development direction of the industry? I hope this interview can bring more in-depth experience and understanding to all readers.
Fashion Print: Please Briefly Introduce the Achievements and Development of Hongsam Digital in Recent Years
Chairman Qin: I clearly remember the date when Hongsam’s first product was launched: September 11, 2001, because something big happened across the ocean that day. At the beginning of the new century, along with the new pattern of the world, China's digital inkjet industry was also booming and ushering in a new pattern from the earliest office printing to ubiquitous printing scenarios. Hongsam Digital, together with other companies in the industry, expanded digital printing applications into various application fields such as textile digital printing and on-demand printing. Based on independent innovation, Hongsam Digital has launched digital printing inks and printing solutions in the field of textile digital printing and digital printing, which grew rapidly during the COVID-19 and in the post-COVID-19 era.
Fashion Print: What Are the Main Products of Hongsam Digital Currently?
Chairman Qin: Hongsam Digital does not have a main product. We stand in the position of "user thinking", analyze needs, and conduct independent research and development. We know that "main promotion" maybe can’t gain market recognition, but demand will inevitably drive you to gain market recognition. Hongsam Digital has prepared a series of products for future users and applications. Therefore, we treat every water-based product in a balanced manner. We believe that these products will gradually gain the trust of customers due to their good quality, stability and better reputation. That is to say, Man proposes, God disposes.
Fashion Print: Compared with Other Similar Products on the Market, What Are the Core Competitiveness of Hongsam Digital?
Chairman Qin: The main feature of Hongsam products is innovation, because we research and develop products according to the needs of users. Our products often take the inherent quality that users tend to ignore as the motivation for development. We understand customers' future demands and potential problems. Even if customers are not aware of these problems for the time being, they will one day avoid customers being trapped in potential problems. For this reason, "designing products with heart" has become the creed of Hongsam, and has become a tradition and a gene of Hongsam in the past 20 years.
Secondly, Hongsam Digital regards service as a priority. Based on its responsibility to users, Hongsam has established a nationwide pre-sales and after-sales service team. This team is not for sales, but to empower partners and help them serve customers well. After all, our product concept is "everything is for users".
Fashion Print: In recent years, the development of the textile digital printing industry is obvious to all. As a leading brand of domestic digital ink, what do you think of the rapid expansion and future development direction of digital printing technology?
Chairman Qin: 20 years ago, Hongsam Digital was founded by several people professional in traditional textile printing and dyeing. Hongsam founders are satisfied with today’s popularization and development of digital inkjet technology in the field of textile printing. After years of cultivation, debate, setbacks, development, the digital printing industry has ushered in a period of rapid development, which has greatly promoted the transformation and upgrading of energy conservation and environmental protection in the printing and dyeing industry, making a positive contribution not only to the industry, but also to the national environmental protection policy. This is also one of the original intentions of Hongsam founders.
Digitalization, energy conservation and environmental protection are the underlying development logic for digital printing to become more and more prosperous. Therefore, higher-performance digital equipment and printing solutions are the focus of demand. Printing solutions that are beneficial to energy conservation and environmental protection will become the mainstream direction, such as textile pigment inks solution and other washing-free and less-washing solutions. At the same time, more scientific and efficient aging, washing, and fixation equipment are also the mainstream direction. Digital printing is no longer simply a replacement for printing and dyeing, but has become an independent industrial technology field, forming its own development character: everything must be energy-saving and environmentally friendly. It can be said that the emergence of digital printing was not born to replace plate printing methods such as gravure printing, rotary screen and flat screen. The historical mission of digital printing is to push the environmental protection and functionality of ancient printing and dyeing industry to a new and higher development level with new technologies, new processes and new materials, which is a historical advancement rather than progress.
Fashion Print: Digital textile pigment ink printing is also a major industry hot spot in recent times. As we all know, Hongsam Digital has extensive and deep research and development in the field of textile pigment inks. What do you think of the surge in demand and future development of textile pigment inks in recent years?
Chairman Qin: The growth of market demand for digital textile pigment inks is an inevitable result. Over the past 20 years, Hongsam Digital adheres that "we can see it because we believe it" rather than "we believe it because we saw it." Nowadays, most people have seen the environmental advantages of textile pigment inks. Hongsam believes that digital textile pigment inks also have broader functional advantages: the hand-feeling, color, fastness, etc. have completely exceeded that of screen printing. This is probably what traditional practitioners do not want to see, but for digital printing industry, this is a huge historical benefit. As a new force, digital printing never developed relying on the charity of traditional industries, but developed because of its own excellence, which is a logical challenge to most traditional practitioners. A change is often gradual at first, but ultimately radical. I believe that the efforts of digital printing professionals will increasingly reflect the advantages of digital textile printing.
Fashion Print: As one of the earliest inks manufacturers to launch a high energy disperse ink direct printing solution, what do you think of the market potential of high energy disperse ink? Hongsam Digital has developed high energy disperse inks for many years, what is the current market share?
Chairman Qin: Professionals from the printing and dyeing industry know that products are the soul of sales, industry standards are strict, and traditional polyester printing uses high energy dyes. In order to take over the production capacity in the traditional polyester printing, the ink must be designed according to the fastness standards of traditional polyester printing. Therefore, high energy disperse ink is by no means a new thing, it is just an old status quo. "User thinking" teaches us that we must come up with professional products to deal with the picky customers. Therefore, Hongsam has already prepared to the development of professional inks in the field of "disperse direct printing" in the early stage. Now it is just catering to customer needs, which is also caused by the product logic of "we can see it because we believe it".
Of course, the diversity of needs constitutes the real world. Sublimation inks and medium energy disperse inks can be used for direct printing under appropriate circumstances; but this depends on your customer standards and specific program requirements; it must not be generalized.
Since high energy disperse ink is not a new topic, let alone a new product, there is no need to talk about its market share. Its market share is roughly smaller than that of traditional polyester printing, because the total amount of direct printing will be smaller than the total amount of screen printing due to the demand for disperse inks and the popularity of thermal transfer printing. Some screen printing will be replaced by thermal transfer printing. Therefore, the high energy disperse printing has no typical characteristics. The clothing standard requirements will determine your printing solution.
Fashion Print: Hongsam textile pigment inks and high energy disperse inks have achieved good results in recent years, and we noticed that Hongsam has invested a lot of energy in the differentiated market in the past two years. The launch of environmentally friendly latex inks expanded the application scenarios of water-based inks. We also noticed the application of Hongsam environmentally friendly latex solutions in Anta, IKEA and other brands. What kind of surprises do you think environmentally friendly latex inks will bring to textiles?
Chairman Qin: Hongsam launched RCT (Rapid Color Technology) printing technology in 2017, which is the predecessor of the environmentally friendly latex inks printing solution. The environmentally friendly latex inks printing solution achieved the no-heating, normal energy printing on a variety of media, and completed the printing of high-demand shoe materials and sportswear through the design of inks and solutions. As a kind of printing technology, it needs to be continuously improved, upgraded and updated. I believe that environmentally friendly latex printing solutions will be faster and more targeted. In this process, users are given an odorless, healthy and environmentally friendly digital printing solution. Hongsam Digital has applied RCT technology for an invention patent and has been authorized, which helped to realize applications in many fields. I would like to share technological achievements with other companies in the industry and promote the prosperity of the industry.
Fashion Print: After a long period of rapid development, the increasing fierce market competition and price wars have become a major problem faced by the industry today. Product differentiation has also been discussed by more and more printing entrepreneurs. How do you view this changing trend?
Chairman Qin: Invincible in the heart is invincible in the world. Competition itself is the force for industry progress, and all competitions should be between themselves and history. , we can find the reasons for our progress and the reasons for our failure through analysis, and constantly improve our team and level, these are the correct ways to improve the company attainments and personal accomplishments.
In the same way, we do not believe in “differentiation” caused by competition. Differentiation exists before we realize it, rather than competition causing it. Some products feel like differentiating products, while In fact, these products in different fields are gradually maturing, and their market acceptance capabilities and technological maturity are different. For example, we cannot think that water-based latex is differentiated just because there is a wide market for eco-solvent ink; nor can we think that high energy disperse ink is differentiated because the normal sublimation printing is popular. All product needs are there from the beginning. There are some factors such as social hardware, software, customer acceptance, technical maturity, and perfection, some products are popularized first, and some developed later.
Differentiation cannot be whimsical, it depends on science and objectivity. Sublimation printing for polyester is conventional, you can't develop sublimation printing solution for nylon, because it's not scientifically feasible, this type differentiation is dangerous.
Fashion Print: In recent years, industrial transfer has also been a concern for many printing companies, markets in Southeast Asia and other Areas have indeed experienced rapid development. What do you think of this trend? In your opinion, does Chinese digital printing market have unique advantages and particularities compared with neighboring countries?
Chairman Qin: The world anti-globalization leds to these so-called migrations. If the Cold War mentality becomes more prevalent, this migration will continue. Social division of labor has resulted in human progress and development, and we believe that society still needs a reasonable division of labor. But this kind of industrial transfer brings about a deep thinking about business: Is it a good business model for printing and dyeing factories to follow the clothing factories? This creates confusion. Fundamentally, the business model of printing and dyeing factories that rely on processing fees to survive is incomplete and therefore unhealthy. You can adjust your role in the industry chain and create your own business model.
China is the largest country in dyes, pigments, textiles and chemical fibers, as a uniquely endowed production base, it is recommended that domestic enterprises work hard on business models, this model will not have more advantages as the region moves. Is Italian textile dead? Is Spanish Ink Dead? Neither. They find a path that suits their own, go on with perseverance, and build your own long-term advantages.
Fashion Print: Hongsam Digital has brought a large number of differentiated solutions to the textile printing industry. Are there any new printing solutions with advantageous that will be launched in the near future? In what aspects will it further upgrade its products in the future?
Chairman Qin: Speaking of differentiation again, there is actually no differentiation in products and solutions because demand exists objectively. Moreover, products will eventually become standardized, one by one. If we talk about product competitiveness, Hongsam believes that it must be coordinated with solution perfection, customer reputation, and customer achievements. While in the shadow of these collaborative successes, there are few words faintly revealed: "Service, service, service."