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Kasturi Balaji Elected Chair of New World Printers Forum

Kasturi Balaji, Director of Kasturi & Sons, Publisher of The Hindu newspaper in India, has been elected the first Chair of the newly founded World Printers Forum, which aims to encourage innovation and the continued development of printed news media.

Rick Stunt, Group Paper Director of the Daily Mail Group Media in the United Kingdom, was elected Vice-Chair of the Forum, an organisation for newspaper printers and suppliers within the World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers (WAN-IFRA).

"The World Printers Forum will focus sharply on how printed products, largely newspapers from news media organisations and companies, can be kept relevant and be sustained into the distant future," said Mr Balaji. "The Forum seeks to achieve this by addressing all print-related questions and encouraging innovation, product development and productivity."

Though much news media innovation today is directed at digital developments, printed newspapers continue to attract 2.5 billion daily readers and produce more than 93 per cent of newspaper company revenues globally. The Printers Forum was created to address and promote the continuing importance of print in the news media ecosystem.

More about the World Printers Forum, including reports, links to productivity initiatives, print awards and other resources, can be found here.

The World Printers Forum Board has 12 members, half of them representing publishing and printing companies and half representing materials and equipment suppliers from around the world.

Members of the Board are:

* Kasturi Balaji, Director, Kasturi & Sons (The Hindu), Chennai, India;

* Dieter Betzmeier, Member of the Executive Board, Manroland Web Systems, Augsburg, Germany;

* Dr. Michael Hirthammer, General Manager, Director Global Paste Technologies, Screen & Industrial, Sun Chemical, Karlstein am Main, Germany;

* Thomas Isaksen, CEO, DDPFF Den Danske Presses, Faellesindkøbs-Forening, København, Denmark;

* Herbert Kaiser, Project Manager & Senior Project Manager Engineering Newspaper Presses, Koenig & Bauer, Würzburg, Germany;

* Jan Kasten, Managing Director, CTO, ppi Media GmbH, Hamburg, Germany;

* Graham Macfarlane, Board Member, Felix Böttcher, Cologne, Germany;

* Mohamed Hassan Mohamed Ali, Senior GM, Technical Services, Star Publications, Member of Asian Newspaper Printers, Petaling Jaya, Malaysia;

* Winfried Schaur, Senior Vice President, Newspaper Publishing, UPM, Augsburg, Germany;

* Josef Schießl, Technical Director, Süddeutscher Verlag Zeitungsdruck, Munich, Germany;

* Peder Schumacher, President V-TAB, Chairman Nordic Offset Printers Association, Gothenburg, Sweden;

* Dr. Rick Stunt, Group Paper Director, Daily Mail Group Media, London, United Kingdom.