In the face of a volatile economy, businesses need a thorough understanding of the forces that directly affect and drive their markets so they can then develop and implement focused strategies to survive and thrive in good times and bad. Some markets, like the dynamic and complex imaging industry, seem to be almost recession-proof.

In their latest study, the "Imaging Industry Margin Index Report," the Woodford Group reveals a resilient market with consistently steady performance, in spite of strong economic headwinds. The report, twentieth in a quarterly series, provides the most recent data points and analysis revealing key trends within the imaging industry as a whole, as well as individual strengths and weaknesses of 12 key vendor players.

"The imaging industry continues to deliver steady revenue and profit streams due to its vital importance to daily business life and a solid, profitable annuity flow. Well-positioned imaging companies will survive the economic crunch better than their counterparts in other sectors, and they will emerge from the current fiscal crisis with new products and application areas to drive future growth," notes Rob Sethre, CEO and principal analyst at Woodford Group.

The Woodford Group, with their partner, Photizo Group, tracked key revenue and profitability metrics of these 12 companies, which included Brother, Canon, Epson, Heidelberg, Hewlett-Packard, Konica Minolta, Kyocera Mita, Lexmark, Océ, Oki, Ricoh and Xerox.

2008 Cumulative Revenues Highest Ever
The report focuses on quarterly as well as accumulated total market revenue and operating income data points (Q/Q and Y/Y) since Q1/04. In addition, the respective shares achieved by the companies included in the index are tracked and analyzed. The updated results reveal short- and long-term trends, overall industry business drivers, as well as individual leaders and laggards. In one cut of the data, Woodford Group notes that the cumulative revenues for 2008 were the highest ever. In addition, operating income levels were the second highest, far surpassing earlier years.

Ultimately, the objective of this comprehensive report is to provide valuable, actionable advice. The results clearly indicate that, despite a few pockets of weakness, the imaging industry continues to be robust and immensely profitable, defying the dour predictions of a troubled economy. A veritable ray of hope in a challenging market.

The Woodford Group is an investment research firm that specializes in providing imaging industry consulting to the financial community. For more information about the "Imaging Industry Margin Index Report," visit