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The US printing market has suffered a decline of 8% over the past six years, with the global economic downturn leading to poor market growth. After a market contraction of 13% in 2009, the industry has slowly re gained momentum as the US economy picked up its pace of growth.
Another reason for the significant drop in the market size was the increasing popularity of digital media and the fact that this is substituting traditional printing as the main source for record-keeping. Consequently, many enterprises previously involved solely in printing activities are now shifting their focus in order to remain competitive. The provision of alternative products and services is especially relevant given the situation of the industry's major B2B buyers.
Publishing businesses, traditionally the main customer group for printing companies, are transforming due to the internet and the development of other technologies that promote digital media rather than paper-based formats.
As a result, the printing industry's customers are now widely dispersed. Together with purchases made by trade unions, book/newspaper publishing companies and public administration institutions, industries such as telecommunications, wholesale and "other" business services are among the main buyers for the US printing market.
The US printing market includes around 35,000 companies with $90 billion of annual revenue. Several giants like RR Donnelley and Canadian printer Quebecor World have multibillion revenues, but most printers considered "large" have annual revenues under $1 billion.
One of the largest companies operating in the US printing market is RR Donnelley & Sons Co. In 2011, the company's sales reached US$10.6 million. The company has more than 58,000 employees worldwide, with manufacturing operations in North America, Latin America, Asia and Europe.
Despite the increasing popularity of digital media and digital record-keeping formats, consumer demand for the market is expected to increase. Consequently, the turnover of market players is projected to increase over the next five years by 9%.
However, this growth is mainly likely to be stimulated by overall economic expansion for the US after the recession. With the internet and other free or low cost forms of media taking over, the flourishing days of the US printing industry seem to be over.
For more information on the US printing market, see the latest research: US Printing Market
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