A few months ago, Lexmark exited the inkjet printer business, resulting to over a thousand of people losing their job. The company said their move was part of a restructuring plan to improve profitability. The Economic Times recently interviewed Lexmark’s CEO, Paul Rooke, who admitted they quit the inkjet printer business because people are printing less and less every day.
Rooke became CEO of Lexmark two years ago and has since been looking for ways to bring the company back to better times. During the ET interview, he pointed out the influence of cloud storage and mobile devices, like smartphones and tablets, as among the culprits that make people print less.
When asked why Lexmark pulled out of the inkjet printer business, Rooke said: “Fundamentally it’s a low usage market and we are seeing a declining trend. People are printing less photos. They are sending them up to the cloud. Content is also residing on smartphones and tablets. Low usage is impacting the supplies market.”
Rooke also shared his opinion about paperless offices. In the 1990s, IBM predicted paperless office and sold its printing business. At that time, Rooke was still with IBM where he began his career as a manufacturing engineer.
The world has more paper now then we’ve ever had. There is a reason. The access to information is growing tremendously with access to smartphones and tablets,” Rooke said.
Rooke added he doesn’t think paper would be going away anytime soon as many of their customers “still need lots of paper for interacting with their customers and suppliers, getting information on a form or signature.”
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