UKCRA submits report to remanufacturing inquiry

September 30, 2014

The association has submitted its report on the UK cartridge remanufacturing industry to the UK government inquiry.ukcra

UKCRA, the United Kingdom printer cartridge remanufacturing trade body, has recently submitted to UK Parliament their 35-page report on the UK printer cartridge remanufacturing industry. UKCRA’s submission is a very thorough and wide-ranging view of the cartridge remanufacturing industry, and encapsulates UKCRA’s views of the barriers to remanufacturing in the United Kingdom.

The UK Parliament’s All-Party Groups for Manufacturing (APMG) and Sustainable Resource (APSRG) called for evidence as it investigates the growth potential for remanufacturing across all sectors of UK industry. The final report will be published in December 2014 and will include recommendations for how the UK government can further encourage the uptake of remanufacturing and promote the circular economy. UKCRA representatives that actively helped with the inquiry will be invited to Parliament for the launch of the report in December, and will in turn provide a follow up of government findings to the members.

UKCRA is confident that the government, if they are serious about promoting remanufacturing, will act in putting measures in place that will achieve the obvious benefits and move forward responsibly for a sustainable outlook to the future.

The Recycler previously reported on UK MP Caroline Spelman’s views on remanufacturing in the UK, and on Kleen-Strike’s Laura Heywood’s perspective on the inquiry.

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Canon settles with ACM Technologies in IP case

September 29, 2014

Thurgood Marshall US Courthouse in New York City, where the case is taking place.

Thurgood Marshall US Courthouse in New York City, where the case is taking place.

The remanufacturer and the OEM have concluded their case in the US District Court for the Southern District of New York.

The announcement from Canon pertains to the original case begun in January, which later span off into a USITC case as well, and ACM Technologies has stipulated to a Consent Judgement and Permanent Injunction from the court to conclude the case.

The judgement and injunction prohibit ACM Technologies from “making, using, selling and offering for sale in the US, and from importing into the US, the toner cartridges and photosensitive drum units that Canon accused of infringing” its patents, including patent numbers 8,135,304; 8,280,278; 8,369,744; 8,433,219; 8,437,669; 8,494,411; 8,565,640; 8,630,564; 8,676,085; 8,676,090; 8,682,215; and 8,688,008

Canon stated: “Throughout the development, sales and marketing process, Canon respects the intellectual property of other companies and individuals and expects others to similarly respect Canon’s intellectual property rights. Canon remains committed to pursuing legal enforcement against those who do not respect Canon’s intellectual property.”

The USITC announced in early September that eight more companies had been found in default: however, other defendants in the USITC arm of the case responded by asking for an order to be given to “show cause why certain respondents should not be found in default” – as five of the eight companies named by Canon had already settled with the OEM in the District Court case, including Acecom, Inc, Do It Wiser LLC and Green Project, Inc., and Online Tech Stores, LLC and Printronic Corporation.

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Static Control names D-G Imaging Solutions as Malaysian distributor

September 26, 2014

The largest manufacturer of aftermarket imaging systems and components named the Malaysian company as its official, authorised distributor in the country.DG logo

The distributor deal is effective as of September 2014, with D-G Imaging Solutions PLT joining a host of other companies worldwide as official distributor of Static Control products. Other distributors include RTS Imaging in Australia; Makkon in Ukraine; Dubaria Computers in India; Automation System in Italy; Adiwarna Gemilang in Indonesia; Lago Print in Venezuela; and Imaging Parts Now in the Philippines.

Deloke Charas, Chief Operations Officer of D-G Imaging Solutions, commented: “These are exciting times for the development of the industry in Malaysia, and I am pleased to be able to support the market with the best service, technical support and the highest quality products. I am proud to partner with Static Control, the worldwide leader in aftermarket products, and to be able to provide local stock to the growing Malaysian market.”

Sam Finch, Global Sales Manager for Southeast Asia at Static Control, also stated: “We are always seeking partners who have a history of providing excellent customer service and a comprehensive understanding of the marketplace. D-G will be a great addition to our family of distributors. They will provide local inventory, quick delivery times and dedicated customer support to the many remanufacturers spread throughout Malaysia.”

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Xerox-linked site says “avoid” aftermarket cartridges and refills

September 24, 2014

Channelnomics says that consumers should avoid aftermarket cartridges as “they just don’t work as well” as originals, along with refilling.

Xerox Square in Rochester, New York

Xerox Square in Rochester, New York

The site, which is listed at the top as “presented by Xerox”, published an article entitled Avoid these print consumable pitfalls, in which it tries to give  advice on what to avoid when buying printer consumables, with specific mention given to “avoid[ing] aftermarket cartridges” and “eschew[ing] ink refills”, because they respectively “just don’t work as well” and have “well documented” quality issues.

The article states that advisers to companies “have a vested interest in keeping inferior ink and toner cartridges […] away from their clients’ printers, copiers and MFPs”, adding that “it’s become all too common for partners to dismiss the importance – and profitability – of genuine print supplies”, using the old saying “penny wise and pound foolish” as part of the “misguided effort to lower costs” by purchasing “cheaper aftermarket consumable alternatives or resort[ing] to refilling cartridges”.

It goes on to note that companies are missing out on a “profit margin” for selling genuine cartridges to clients instead of remanufactured or alternative supplies, and that “the conundrum of consumables choice is really no choice at all”, citing a recent survey by Campbell DeLong Resources that found 66 percent of business users “reported a variety of imaging problems […] when using third-party supplies”.

Specifically focusing on aftermarket cartridges, the site says “the short answer here is, they just don’t work as well”, and it refers to “independent testing” from SpencerLab and Buyers Laboratory, which compared Xerox originals to third-party inkjet and toner cartridges, with “the most shocking finding of all” being that “more than half of the machines loaded with aftermarket cartridges broke down before the testing could be completed”.

Other errors were said to include “toner leakage, unreadable prints, paper jams […] and premature failure of imaging units, transfer rollers and fusers”, with the genuine cartridges apparently yielding 27 percent more prints than what the site calls “knock-offs”. Turning to refills next, the article says that allowing refilling or using refills are a “transgression” due to their “well-documented” problems, including “lousy prints […] foul odours [and] cartridge failures”.

Channelnomics states its belief that “every printer requires a specific ink formulation”, and that this is a fact “ignored by most bulk refilling kits”, which are apparently “notorious for clogging cartridge nozzles” and causing further problems, adding that “refilling a cartridge even once without regard for the printhead can introduce a potentially costly liability into the print architecture”.

Summing up its points, the article states that “the best way” to maintain quality printing is “through the disciplined use of genuine, factory-authorised consumables”, and avoiding aftermarket cartridges “reduces wear and tear, lowers down time and produces better quality results”.

What do you make of this report? Let us know in the comments below or at news@therecycler.com.

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Static Control expands seminar programme

September 23, 2014

Tom Yates delivering a technical demonstration at a previous Static Control seminar.

Tom Yates delivering a technical demonstration at a previous Static Control seminar.

Programme will now include an autumn series of events, following its popularity throughout this year.

The largest manufacturer of aftermarket imaging systems and components announced that it has expanded its seminar programme to include 12 further events, following the success of the company’s 22 previous seminars that have been held at various locations across Europe and Western Asia since April.

The autumn series of seminars began on 19 September in Zagreb, Croatia, with another seminar taking place today (23 September) in Belgrade, Serbia. Further events are planned to take place in Slovenia, Bosnia, Hungary, Germany, Belarus, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Armenia, Spain and Portugal; with all events being free of charge for Static Control customers.

As with previous events, the autumn seminars run for a full day and include presentations delivered by ETIRA and representatives from OEMs, as well as a commercial presentation concerning recent market data, forecasts on what’s next for the industry, and any other technical issues common to that region. Furthermore, a “comprehensive” presentation of Static Control’s COLORCONTROL Imaging Replacement Systems is delivered to attendees, explaining the opportunity, the selling strategy and the range of tools and resources provided by the company.

Attendees also benefit from remanufacturing demonstrations delivered by technicians, covering printer cartridges that are relevant to the specific region’s remanufacturers; with a Q&A session offering them the opportunity to put any questions to the Static Control staff and guest speakers.

Ken Lalley, Sales Director at Static Control, commented: “All of the guest speakers have shared valuable knowledge and we look forward to what timely information will be given throughout the autumn series. In particular, the issue of clones in the marketplace has come up as a common theme that clearly affects everyone. This in turn has highlighted how important it is that all corners of the industry cooperate to combat the problem – including the OEMs.”

For Static Control’s customers, the events have introduced new products and services. As Maciej Sianos, Static Control’s Unit Business Manager for Poland, noted after a session in Lodz: “The recently re-launched website and the upgrade of our e-commerce system in Europe, which features 24/7 online ordering capabilities, was great news for attendees. Many customers were also happy to learn of our wide range of Kyocera products, as this has proven to be a difficult sector for the aftermarket to gain market share.”

The Recycler has reported on a number of earlier seminars hosted by Static Control this year, including events in Italy, Latvia, ParisRomania, Poland, and Greece.

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Consumables purchasers most stressed in SMBs

September 18, 2014

A Staples survey found that small business owners spending more time managing printer consumables are “most stressed”.work-personalities

The survey, called Know Your Type, focused on “identifying workplace personalities” as well as discovering the purchasing habits of SMB owners when it comes to inkjet and toner cartridges, with management of this aspect of a business causing “high stress levels” for business owners. 300 SMB owners were surveyed from companies varying in size from one to 19 employees and 20 to 49 employees.

One third of SMB owners who classified printing as “very important to their business” were said to have either “high” or “very high” levels of stress, with those spending more time managing printer consumables “the most stressed”. More than 70 percent of the owners surveyed described their position in the workplace as a “hands-on doer”, in that they “prefer to dive in and tackle the work themselves, rather than spending time convincing others to take action”.

38 percent of owners identified as “helpers”, meaning that they “focus on the well-being of others and what they can do to help”, and these owners “have high stress” when purchasing printer consumables. 85 percent of “helpers” are “somewhat last minute in buying ink and toner”, and more than 75 percent “frequently run out of ink and toner during a job at least some of the time”, with 69 percent buying their consumables at a retail outlet.

“Creative” owners, who “prefer going with the flow and working with minimal structure or direction”, are said to be “more organised than they appear […] keeping ink and toner supplies organised”, with the survey finding that 57 percent of creative types “tend to stockpile or keep just enough ink and toner on hand”, though 60 percent of these had “forgotten” the model number of the cartridge they needed “when shopping”.

Finally, the “organiser”, who would “prefer to create structure and follow a routine”, is the one SMB owner that “recycles more”, with 68 percent of “organisers” saying that they “always recycle their ink and toner cartridges”; Staples added that recycling used cartridges “is particularly common” among these SMB owners.

Alison Corcoran, Senior Vice President of Marketing at Staples, stated: “Small business owners tend to operate as CEOs – chiefs of everything. Their focus needs to be on increasing productivity and running a company as efficiently as possible, not worrying about their ink and toner.”

Michael ‘Dr. Woody’ Woodward PhD, an organisational psychologist, added: “Doing it all can mean losing it all. Being hands-on isn’t necessarily a good thing, particularly when it comes to growing a business. Knowing your workplace personality type can help you manage others more efficiently, so you can spend more time on CEO duties.”

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Print-Rite settles with Canon

September 15, 2014

Print-Rite 3d h…jpg - smallThe company and subsidiaries have settled in both the USITC and District Court cases in the USA.

Print-Rite announced that its group of companies had “been working closely with Canon to resolve the ITC investigation and the District Court Case” that alleged “infringement of Canon’s patents”, with the group comprising Print-Rite N.A. Inc.; Union Technology International (Macao Commercial Offshore) Company Ltd; Print-Rite Unicorn Image Products Company Ltd; Innotex Precision Ltd; and Print-Rite Holdings.

The company added that it was “pleased to announce that it has entered into a settlement agreement with Canon” that “resolves both the ITC investigation and the District Court case”, with this entailing the company “finalising its plans for introduction of redesigned cartridges that avoid Canon’s patents”, and Print-Rite “will inform our customers as soon as the new cartridges are available for sale”.

The company stated: “Print-Rite has been awarded numerous patents for its innovations and has over 2,200 patents and pending applications worldwide and remains committed to continued investments to benefit and protect its customers.”

The USITC case recently saw some of the defendants group together to question a decision by both the USITC and Canon concerning defaulting companies; whilst Grand Image recently settled in the District Court case.

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OCP party celebrates 20 years

September 15, 2014

German ink manufacturer OCP celebrated 20 years in business with a Cellar Party in their Bochum offices on 12 September.

Horst Edelmeier speaks at the party

Horst Edelmeier speaks at the party

Staff from OCP’s Bochum and Lage facilities joined friends, retired employees and invited guests to celebrate their 20 years in business. The formalities opened with a presentation by Horst Edelmeier, one of the OCP founders, about how OCP came to be established making ‘pancakes’ for typewriter and dot matrix printers. They saw the opportunity in the market for inkjet remanufacturing, and the business was born.

Fellow OCP founder Siegfried Koch gave a presentation on the development of inks then and today; including a brief glance into some of their future developments, and CEO Michael Pohlschmidt closed the formal session with a presentation on the challenges and opportunities for the future.

Formalities over, the party began with a sumptuous hot buffet and music from the 20 years of OCP, and one or two even older golden oldies!

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Canon resolves lawsuit with Grand Image

September 12, 2014

The OEM has concluded the suit with the US-based company in the US District Court for the Southern District of New York.

US District Court for the Southern District of New York

US District Court for the Southern District of New York

Canon announced the “successful conclusion” of its IP lawsuit against Grand Image Inc. in its IP case at the US District Court for the Southern District of New York, which the OEM began against a number of aftermarket companies in January this year.

The case, which also splintered off into a USITC (United States International Trade Commission) case in May, concerned infringement of “certain toner cartridges and photosensitive drum units sold for use in Canon and Hewlett-Packard laser beam printers”, with Grand Image Inc., which also “does business” under the name INK4S, agreeing to a Consent Judgement and Permanent Injunction.

The judgement and injunction prohibit the company from “making, using, selling and offering for sale in the US, and from importing into the US, the toner cartridges and photosensitive drum units that Canon accused of infringing its US [patents]”, including numbers 8,135,304; 8,280,278; 8,369,744; 8,433,219; 8,437,669; 8,494,411; 8,565,640; 8,630,564; 8,676,085; 8,676,090; 8,682,215 and 8,688,008.

The OEM’s usual statement was also released, noting that “throughout the development, sales and marketing process, Canon respects the intellectual property of other companies and individuals and expects others to similarly respect Canon’s intellectual property rights. Canon remains committed to pursuing legal enforcement against those who do not respect Canon’s intellectual property”.

Other companies that had previously settled in the Southern District of New York, including Acecom, Green Project, and Do It Wiser along with OnlineTechStores and Printronic, were found in default in the USITC case earlier this month, prompting the unexpected questioning of the commission’s order by a wide range of existing defendants in the case earlier this week.

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Canon’s USITC case sees defendants question order

September 10, 2014

United_States_International_Trade_Commission_sealThe USITC has found eight more companies in default, but a group of other defendants have joined together to question the decision, as some of the defaulting companies had already settled with the OEM in the District Court case.

The USITC (United States International Trade Commission) announced on 5 September that eight more companies in its case on behalf of Canon had been found in default – which means that the Commission had attempted to contact said companies about the case, but that none of them had responded to the contact. The USITC complaint stemmed from the original case at the District Court of the Southern District of New York, announced in January.

The defaulting companies include: Shenzhen ASTA Official Consumable Co., Ltd.; Acecom, Inc.; Do It Wiser LLC; Grand Image Inc.; Green Project, Inc.; Online Tech Stores, LLC; Printronic Corporation; and Zinyaw LLC. Under USITC legislation, respondents are found to be in default “if [they] fail to respond to the complaint and notice of investigation”.

However, in an interesting turn of events, a number of other defendants in the USITC arm of the case have responded to this move by the USITC by asking for an order to be given to “show cause why certain respondents should not be found in default” – with their main argument being that five of the eight companies named by Canon having already settled with the OEM in the District Court case.

The five that previously settled in the District Court case are Acecom, Inc, Do It Wiser LLC and Green Project, Inc., and Online Tech Stores, LLC and Printronic Corporation.

The group of defendants questioning the default order meanwhile include: International Laser Group, Inc.; Aster Graphics Co., Ltd.; Aster Graphics, Inc.; The Supply Guys, LLC; American Internet Holdings, LLC; Jiangxi Yibo E-Tech Co., Ltd; Ninestar Image Tech Limited; Zhuhai Seine Technology Co., Ltd.; Ninestar Technology Company, Ltd.; Seine Tech (USA) Co., Ltd.; Seine Image (USA) Co., Ltd.; Nano Pacific Corporation; Ink Technologies Printer Supplies, LLC; Linkyo Corp.; and Katun Corporation.

The defendants’ perspective is that “in seeking the entry of defaults against the settling respondents in the ITC, Canon seeks to paint a false picture of irresponsible, unresponsive infringers”, with the prior consent judgements the five agreed to “render[ing] any remedial action by the Commission unnecessary”, creating a “misleading impression of widespread, unchecked infringement that should play no role in further proceedings”.

Actionable Intelligence also reported on the developments, giving its view that “it is interesting to see the active respondents in the ITC investigation banding together […] we are eager to see whether this signifies that aftermarket firms will display a sense of industry unity […] or if this complaint will follow the path of Canon’s previous 337-TA-829 investigation, in which respondents settled with Canon one after the next, resulting in a win largely by default and a GEO for Canon”.

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