By Matthew Henry

SYDNEY: Fujifilm Australia has backed photo gifting as the engine which will drive growth in the imaging industry over the coming years and today announced it has acquired a 35 per cent share in Australian photo kiosk software developer, Whitech.

Fujifilm this morning announced its investment in Whitech Pty Ltd upon predictions that the photo printing market is poised for continued expansion.

“The popularity of photo gifting in Australia will create the next growth phase for the imaging industry where ordering from retail digital photo centres, as well as new home ordering modules, are expected to more than double sales in the next two years,” said Fujifilm Holdings Australasia director, Dave Marshall.

Fujifilm has partnered with Whitech in the past in developing the Photo Teller software for its Digital Photo Centre (DPC) printing kiosks, which are located in retailers around the country.

“Fujifilm has maintained a strong business relationship with Whitech throughout the development of the Fujifilm digital printing model, so the organisation’s acquisition of an equity interest in Whitech was a natural progression,” said Fujifilm Holdings Australasia, Mike Machida.

Established in 1995, Whitech is an Australian software development company specialising in point of sale solutions.

Fujifilm has a commanding position in the Australian photo kiosk printing market and claims its kiosks are now the most popular method consumers use to order photographs in Australian retail stores.

The company will rollout a range of new photo printing services through its kiosks with products including fully-bound or soft cover photo books, story books, large canvas prints, personalised stationery, calendars, key rings, mugs and t-shirts.

“Incorporating Whitech software with Fujifilm’s DPC kiosks has enabled consumers to edit images for immediate in-store printing and will also enable the ordering of a range of photo gifting products,” said Marshall.

“Whitech DPC kiosk software can also be customised for each retailer’s needs to accommodate all workflow management and output capabilities.”