Cabot to expand US inkjet capacity by 100%

Specialty chemicals producer Cabot will invest $10 million to increase production capacity at its inkjet facility in Haverhill, Mass., by the end of 2012, company officials said on Monday.

The expansion, which started earlier this year, will enable Cabot to increase the capacity of its CAB-O-JET color pigment dispersion and polymer product lines by 100%, the company said.

The expansion could further strengthen Cabot's leadership position in aqueous pigment dispersions, which are used to provide the black, cyan, yellow and magenta colors in many of today's inkjet printers.

Over the past few years, inkjet printers have started to penetrate the office market, competing against laser printers by providing full color printing at low cost and having significant environmental benefits due to lower energy usage, the company said.

In addition, the widespread adoption of eReaders and the resulting lower demand for traditional books has led publishing houses to find alternatives to large print runs, such as ”print on demand.”

Similarly, transactional printing, such as bank statements and bills, is using more color and is being used to provide more personalized marketing content.

Digital printing technology, such as inkjet, satisfies this growing need for shorter print runs and personalization that was either cost prohibitive or not feasible with traditional analog printing.

“This expansion will support the rapid growth in inkjet that we see in both the office and commercial printing segments,” said Fred von Gottberg, Cabot’s vice president for new business.

“With an increased demand for color printing, personalized content and short runs, we believe that inkjet printing has become the best, most cost-effective solution.”

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