Investors cheer as Lexmark quits ink

City A.M. Reporter
PRINTER maker Lexmark International said yesterday it will stop making inkjet printers and focus on its more profitable imaging and software businesses, sending its shares up as much as 20 per cent.

Lexmark, never a big player in inkjet printers, said it would continue to sell laser printers as it beefs up its print services business, for which it has recently made acquisitions.

The company plans to sell about 1,000 inkjet-related patents and will cut 1,700 jobs, or 13 per cent of its workforce.

Most printer makers are struggling with falling sales as printing has been a target of corporate cost cutting and personal computing moves to tablets and smart phones.

Lexmark said it was quitting the inkjet business because of aggressive market pricing and the investment required to maintain a return. Revenue from the company’s legacy inkjet hardware business declined 66 per cent in the first half of 2012, forcing the company to cut its full-year forecast.