EFI Connect 2017

Artificial intelligence, running successful companies, single-pass technology, and more.

Big Picture

EFI hosted its 17th annual user conference, Connect, in January at the Wynn Hotel in Las Vegas. With customers, dealers, and press from 37 nations, this was the largest Connect conference yet.

Special sessions included fireside chat keynotes with EFI CEO Guy Gecht, Xerox CEO Jeff Jacobson, and Quad/Graphics CEO Joel Quadracci.

Some highlights:

Guy Gecht says artificial intelligence (AI) is the next big thing; whether that’s scary or exciting is up for debate. EFI is looking into some AI projects as consumer behavior continues to influence on-demand print production.

During his first interview since Xerox’s split, Xerox CEO Jeff Jacobson touched on ways to keep print meaningful to millennials – through innovation, winning culture, and CEO visibility – because they are key to growing a successful business. “It all starts with the printed page,” said Jacobson. “Print is the igniter for it all.” And how is Xerox becoming more involved in print? With new investments in packaging and inkjet.

Quad/Graphics CEO Joel Quadracci spoke on how to integrate customer needs and available technology to achieve success. “Never waste panic. Never waste tough times. That's when people are willing to try new things,” he said. Quadracci points to personalization, packaging, and awareness of change as key for the future of print. “Print is about evolution,” he said. “Today, it's about effectively integrating all of the channels.”

This year’s Connect featured technology advancements from EFI, including the debut of the company’s largest soft-signage printer, the Vutek FabriVu 520, and new LED, roll-to-roll printers, the Vutek 3r and 5r. Ken Hanulec, EFI, says inkjet continues to be a growth driver for the company. And what’s to come? Single-pass technology for the corrugated and packaging markets.

Follow Editor-in-Chief Adrienne Palmer on Twitter @Adrienne_BigPic for live updates from events like EFI Connect.