Landa Corporation has moved to clarify the cost of its nano ink after a figure given by chairman Benny Landa in an interview with Israeli business magazine Globes suggested ink costs of $5m (£3m) a year for Landa press users.
Following last month's announcement of a €100m investment in Landa Digital Printing by specialty chemicals company Altana, Landa told Globes magazine that both firms were at heart materials companies.
"It's true we need to build and sell machines, but only in order to create demand for materials, such as ink," said Landa. "The main revenue from a machine (whose average price is $3m) will come from ink sales, which will reach $25m per machine over five years."
This would suggest an ink cost of just under £3m a year, or approximately £250,000 a month, although Landa Digital Printing vice president of marketing Ila Bialystok clarified that this would not be the average ink cost for Landa press users.
"The press report should have correctly said 'which can reach $25m per machine over five years'. Naturally, Landa does not expect the average Nanographic Printing Press to generate such high revenues – and certainly not in the early years, particularly with respect to sheetfed presses," said Bialystok.
"However, in some of our target markets, such as flexible packaging and magazine publishing, where the throughput of a single high speed web-fed Landa Nanographic Printing Press may exceed 30m square meters per year, with typically high ink coverage, such high revenues are likely even while offering the lowest cost per digital page in the industry."
While Landa's exact ink costs remain unknown, Kodak has quoted a cost per page "approaching $0.005/A4 in colour consumable costs" for its recently announced Kodak Prosper 6000 digital web presses.
One ink industry expert told PrintWeek that the Landa figure still sounded "ambitious" even for a Landa W50 web press printing at a rate of 200m/min on a 560mm web.
"High volume purchasers of offset ink would probably pay around £4/kilo whereas digital ink can be £200/kilo," he said. "Even so, someone running a 32pp web offset press flat out could use £50,000 of ink a month... [so taking into account the difference in volume of output] £250,000 a month sounds like an ambitious number."