Added: 18 Oct 2022
Macro-economic insights 2022. Part 2: Raw materials

Welcome back to macro-economic insights 2022 for large-format printing media. After discussing currency exchange rates and how they impact the printing industry, we examine the changes in raw materials prices.

Role reversal

Over the last few years, we’ve had aggressive trends in commodity markets. When we think about the main factors that determine “strong commodities”, it is typically the weak US dollar, strong China economy, and increasing global Gross domestic product (GDP) that are necessary for sustained commodities rallies. However, many of these factors are currently tilting the other way, so it’s no question we’ll have high volatility times.

Since their peak in 2008, commodities have already experienced 50% declines twice, and in 2022 we might expect a similar pattern too. Because the US dollar is getting stronger, the Chinese economy is slowing, and the world fears a worldwide recession, there is a risk of sentiment in the financial markets.

Our prediction? A potential decline in industrial metals and a high potential for most commodities to follow. As an indicator, copper is falling quickly, which should impact industrial metals and other products.

Continental competition

Regarding LFP-related commodities (PVC, polyester), we expect them to react the same way except for paper.

The latter is closely tied to energy costs and might stay high for a short while (up to 2 years). We still don’t know how the European Union’s financial support to local industrial manufacturers will help paper producers lower their costs. Despite the EU’s producers losing the competition to Asia and America, the poster paper is not easy to source outside the EU. Therefore, paper prices will most probably remain elevated.

Furthermore, the competitiveness gap between polyester and PVC producers in Europe and Asia will still widen. Asian manufacturers will become even more competitive and remain core LFP materials suppliers in the EU market unless the EU issues sufficient financial support to its local producers.

*The analysis was prepared by our FX risk management partners CorpHedge.

Added: 24 Aug 2022
Macro-economic insights 2022. Part 1: Currency

Changes in currency exchange rates are, at the moment, one of the factors influencing the cost changes in the wide format printing market. Recently, the strengthening of the US dollar and the weakening of the euro have increased and continue to increase the cost of materials and the final printing products. What are the trends of the currency market in the near future? Is it possible to control the risk of exchange rate changes?

Why are the US Dollar strengthening and the Euro weakening?

The changes are influenced by the current macroeconomic environment, which has little stability. Regrouping political alliances and the dramatically changed demand for raw materials and energy resources due to sanctions are raising their prices. Since the US dollar is the main currency of the raw materials market in which settlements are made, the demand for this currency grows simultaneously, strengthening it against the euro.

In addition, the US dollar offers higher interest rates and lower geopolitical and energy risks for the US than for Europe. Additionally, the USD currency is supported by the US becoming the world’s top producer of agriculture and energy.

Forecast: How will the exchange rate between the US dollar and the euro change in the future?

We still see significant differences between US and EU macro-economic data, especially since the EU’s energy crisis is worsening.

The role of European and US central banks in regulating economic development through changing the base interest rate is also important here. After all, higher interest rates not only reduce inflation in the country but also increase the demand for that currency. It is expected that the Fed Funds, the US central bank, will implement a much more aggressive policy – increasing interest rates at a faster pace and thereby strengthening the US dollar.

According to market estimates based on Fed Funds futures data, US interest rates could reach 3.5 to 3.75% by the end of the year. Although the European Central Bank (ECB) may be less aggressive given the likelihood of an economic slowdown at year’s end, the EU heavily depends on financial data.

The market anticipates that US interest rates will peak the following year and then begin to decline along with the national economy.

Therefore, it might be better to anticipate higher EUR/USD upside corrections in the coming year, starting in the second quarter or later.

How to manage risk?

The current environment is more favorable for the USD, so it is wise to base budget planning on more robust USD forecasts. Financial instruments that fix the current rate of the US dollar for the future (futures) would be a good solution that can help reduce or neutralize potential losses due to fluctuations in exchange rates. An even more effective way is to prepare a full strategy for such price-fixing instruments and actively manage them. Large companies have separate departments for this; small ones have the opportunity to outsource these services using the services of financial risk managers.

*The analysis was prepared by our FX risk management partners CorpHedge.

Added: 18 Aug 2022
Macro-economic insights 2022

The last decade, until Covid-19 and the challenges it brought, has been a good one: robust economic growth, relative geopolitical stability, persistently low inflation, and supportive central banks. This converted into low volatility, stable and robust performance for most businesses and investments.

But all good things come to an end, they say. The macro-economic conditions are changing rapidly with interest rates and inflation rising. Growing political unrest is making the world less stable. Deglobalization trends will potentially create risks and opportunities for businesses and investments. Thus, most businesses need to adapt to the new situation and play accordingly.

That’s why we’re teaming with CorpHedge and Dainius Šilkaitis, and in the upcoming weeks, we’ll be analyzing the macro-economics in the print media industry.

What you can expect:
💱 Analysis of the change in the euro/US dollar ratio and its impact on the printing materials industry
💰 Overview of the price of raw materials
🚛 Discussion about the situation in the logistics sector Stay tuned!

Stay tuned!

Added: 26 May 2022
“Strongest in Lithuania”

We are happy to share that GM Media has just received the certificate of financial credibility the “Strongest in Lithuania”, issued by the national credit bureau Creditinfo Lietuva, thus certifying our company’s high credit rating. ⭐

Over the past 11 years, the “Strongest in Lithuania” certification system has been recognizing financially sound companies with stable credit history throughout the Baltic States. We are proud to have been ranked among the financially soundest businesses as this also serves as a trustworthy indication to our partners of GM Media’s financial credibility and its stable role in the print media market.

This certification also reflects the company’s transparent and ethical business culture, which, we believe, are the core values of every sustainable business. Being among just 1.8% of Lithuanian business entities with a stable high credit ranking also obliges us to carry on with such a notable benchmark.

Added: 17 Feb 2022
Becoming a Forest Stewardship Council™ certified supplier

Those who have been following us for a while may recall that in November of last year, we began the process of becoming a Forest Stewardship Council™ (FSC) certified supplier of the poster and other papers. This international certification system is linked to a strict chain of custody certification, with the goal of preserving and responsibly using forest resources.

A few months later, we are excited to announce that all necessary procedures have been completed, and the FSC certification is finally in our hands!

This means that GM Media paper products are now officially FSC-certified, and our customers can be confident that we adhere to the highest social and environmental standards in the market. Our next step in the nearest future is to have only FSC-certified products in our paper materials range.

Added: 27 Jan 2022
A year of turbulance for print media industry

2021 was a year of turbulance for print media industry. Together with our partners TEXSIB GmbH; S-print Baltic; WERSIGNS; Graphic & Paper Merchants Ireland, we reflect on the past year and look ahead to 2022.

🚚 Shakings in logistics. In spring, when governments started lifting lockdown restrictions across the world, print media was quite quick to recover. The industry was experiencing sudden and high demand, while manufacturers were unable to produce sufficient quantities of materials in such a short period of time. This caused a bottleneck in the supply chain, not to mention jammed seaports due to such immediate demand peak.

⚡ Rise of production costs. The energy crisis in both China and Europe resulted in much lower production capacity and a rise in production costs. Last year, the industry also faced skyrocketing prices of raw materials which started in the logistics sector, progressed to the raw material market, and ultimately reached the end-user. Since print media is a rather inert market, such a price rise hasn’t been observed in a long time.

💰 Record sales versus breakdowns.Pandemic shook up the market – some companies diversified their activity, some even left the business, meanwhile those who stayed and embraced the challenges managed to seize the opportunity. Besides, the market witnessed quite serious investments – those postponed from 2020. Since the sector might now be somewhat depleted, some hope for significant growth potential for 2022.

🌳 Sustainable choices. Since PVC material became more expensive in 2021, the price-gap between the latter and the PVC-Free became smaller, thus encouraging an increase in the use of #sustainable products. Also, the energy crisis might have evoked the so-called “print-media renaissance”. Because of their high energy consumption and environmental impact, large format HD screens might become less popular. Therefore, paper #advertising is a more environmentally friendly option.

Stepping into 2022, it looks like it might be a year of recession, with ongoing shakings. The demand will probably remain unpredictable and flactuating, though the supply might be scarce. The growth will be quite challenging not only because of the abnormal functioning of seaports, but also due to the shortage of overall resources – from raw materials to human resources. It seems there is going to be another year of turbulence.

Added: 26 May 2021
Outdoor advertising goes green!


GM Media introduces a unique product line for outdoor printing that is overturning the direction of this segment towards sustainable and socially-responsible advertising. The new generation of outdoor print materials is produced without environmentally harmful polyvinyl chloride (PVC) and can be 100% recyclable.

Sustainability challenge for outdoor advertising market

Outdoor banners remain an attractive form of advertising. Thanks to large formats and relatively low advertising noise in the outdoor space, these banners are frequently included into the media mix of numerous advertising campaigns. However, it is getting obvious that outdoor advertising is currently facing serious sustainability issues, while increasing number of socially responsible advertisers are expressing skepticism towards this product or even rejecting it. The reason lays in the used production materials and poor recycling possibilities. Most outdoor advertising banners are made on PVC basis which is toxic and harmful to both – nature and humans. Large formats, in this case, are also a major source of pollution.
Moreover, most outdoor advertising banners are non-recyclable and when advertising campaigns are over, they become toxic waste for about 400 years (it takes this long to decompose) or are incinerated, thus releasing hazardous substances into the atmosphere.
Big brands, motivated by their customers, have begun to carefully monitor the footprint of their activity and are replacing or even abandoning the most polluting operations. It is no suprise that outdoor advertising has become their frequent target.

Solution found – an environmentally friendly outdoor banner

GM Media offers a sustainable alternative – Eco Frontlit PP Premium – a PVC-free outdoor banner that is 100% recyclable.
To produce such an outdoor banner, polypropylene (PP) is used instead of PVC. From an environmental point of view, polypropylene is among the most neutral plastics and contains only carbon and hydrogen, so when incinerated it emits environmentally friendly materials – water and carbon dioxide.
Besides, once the advertising campaign is over, by separating the paint layer from the print base, the banner can be recycled and can come back to life.
Eco Frontlit PP Premium is durable, tensile-resistant, easily weldable and eye-let, with long-lasting bright colors and smooth hanging. The print can be on both sides, which allows to achieve maximum visual brightness.
“Usually sustainable solutions only work in practice, if innovative companies and their employees do not need to make any compromises in quality or investment into new technologies. We are really glad that the innovation we are introducing maintains the usual characteristics and quality of outdoor banner materials, but allows using them without changing the established production chain or banner- mounting routine,” states Mantas Ažusienis, GM Media Director.

Cheaper and more sustainable logistics

Eco Frontlit PP Premium is significantly lighter in comparison to conventional materials for outdoor banners. It is 150 gr/m2, which allows to significantly reduce both – transportation costs as well as related CO2 emission.
“We are happy that our new product is sustainable in several respects, and our customers’ sustainable choices are really consistent. Besides, printing houses and their customers can at least partially (while in some cases – almost fully) compensate a certain increase in material costs by lower printing and storage expenses,” adds Mantas Ažusienis.

A range of eco-friendly products
GM Media product range includes two materials with the same sustainability properties. The above-mentioned Eco Frontlit PP Premium is a great choice for long-term or medium advertising campaigns. The second one – Eco Frontlit PP Standart – is an even lighter alternative (125 gr/m2) with excellent print quality and high resistance characteristics, while it is cheaper and well-suited for smaller outdoor formats and short-term advertising campaigns.

Added: 25 Mar 2021
What print materials are worth choosing for shining shopping area?

The area where customers are choosing and purchasing goods have a significant impact on both sales and the overall image of the store itself as well as the products. Comparative researches acknowledge that high-quality advertising prints lead to the fact that the brands which are using it are perceived by customers as more unique and of higher quality compared to those who choose average quality prints. As a result, customers are more likely to purchase these brands, share more positive feedback and would more likely agree with a higher price.

GM Media product range includes a collection of retail print materials, combining carefully-tested products of impeccable resolution, smooth printing process and easy handling to decorate various retail spaces.

Color power for large formats

Large formats are eye-catching by their own nature, but printing houses frequently face the problem of achieving true colors or a sense of space and depth when producing prints of impressive sizes. Such images will usually look flat, untrue, and a part of the creative idea remains in the margins, however. GM Media’s woven fabric Textile Backlit 1300-175 is ideal for accepting this challenge. When printed on this backlit textile, visuals come to real life – due to an extremely wide color gamut, exceptional color accuracy and the ability to reproduce the subtlest color shades as well as the very deep black color. The textile texture creates eye-pleasing and cozy effect of canvas. Besides, the material dissipates light perfectly, so it is easy to illuminate evenly.

Last but not least, the material working process is really simple – after printing the visual, it can be safely transported folded because when unfolded, the fold lines disappear without a trace.

Small, but significant stickers without traces of glue

In addition to large print formats, there also exist small ones. Often directing consumers in the right direction, informing them about prices, giving recommendations or highlighting important aspects of a product. Yes, stickers fulfil all such tasks.

Consumers usually evaluate the quality of a sticker twice – firstly, when it is attached (we expect the sticker to remain firmly affixed), and secondly, when the sticker has to be removed – then we assess whether the sticker is easy to peel off and leaves no traces. Window Film 1300 from the GM Media product range is designed for durable gluing and easy removing, without leaving a hint of the sticker presence. The sticker is covered with silicone glue, therefore adheres firmly to flat surfaces, but does not stick to fingers and is easy to attach or correct its positions while attaching.


The sticker can be attached and removed, then attached and removed again, and done so many times. Because made of polyester, stickers are durable, therefore also suitable when looking for sustainable solutions.

You can attach it on display surfaces, windows, mirrors and even onto the most luxurious flat surfaces – such as TV screens, household appliances, car surfaces – without any fear of damaging them.

Light boxes with a seemingly 3D effect

The visuals of light boxes attract attention thanks to their brightness and color contrast. However, in order to look effective, their prints have to be exceptionally precise and the visuals must be reproduced in tiniest details – we look at them at a close-up and, because of the lighting effect – as if through a magnifying glass. One of GM Media’s most popular products – Backlit 200 Glossy – is ideal for light boxes. The print on this material not only guarantees visual brightness, clarity of details or a wide gamut of reproduced colors and shades, but thanks to special processing of its surface, it also creates a sense of space and depth – as if you were looking at the visual through 3D glasses.

Working with this material is sheer pleasure. It is stiff enough for quickly and easily inserting the advertising material into the light box and for taking it out.

Both good sides – whichever side you look at

In areas where customers move in both directions, it would be ideal to make the most of promotional tools by offering two-sides printing solutions. There are quite a few on the market, but the Display Sheet 1100, selected by GM Media, stands out since both sides of the print material are indentical in their characteristics and also provide a complete blockout. As a result, the advertising visual on both sides looks equally perfect, without any “visual noise” from the other side.

For exploitation, it is very important that the mounted material remains perfectly flat – its edges do not curve even after prolonged hanging.

Interested in materials for retail advertising? Place an order for a sample collection!



Added: 05 Nov 2020
GM Media forecasts a breakthrough in socially responsible alternatives in outdoor banner market

Outdoor banner materials, containing PVC, account for a significant share of the outdoor advertising market and unfortunately remains a significant source of micro-plastic pollution. GM Media forecasts a change – a breakthrough in the market of environment-friendly PVC-free outdoor banners.

This will be predetermined by shifting consumer attitudes, change in pricing and significant improvements in outdoor banner materials.


Shifting public attitudes: companies face the need to change their mindset


As society has become increasingly sensitive to environmental, resource conservation and health issues, companies have also started making their business decisions, keeping in mind what “footprint” their choices and activities make on the environment. Companies now are more frequently seeking to review all their business processes in respect of environmental considerations and thus to demonstrate their social responsibility. “Socially responsible advertising campaigns will be no exception, and considering the changes in the pricing and product properties of PVC-free banner materials, we can forecast that this will become a very attractive solution,” says GM Media Director Mantas Azusienis.


A fully resource-efficient solution


The price gap between environmentally friendly outdoor banner materials and PVC-coated products has recently been narrowing rapidly. “On average, it accounts for 15-20 percent of the market. This is due to increasing competition in the field as well as the application of more efficient production solutions.” – comments Mantas Azusienis.

In addition, the materials offered by GM-Media for PVC-free banners are more than 2.5 times lighter in comparison with the solutions for PVC-coated materials, currently on the market. This significantly decreases transportation costs and reduces CO2 emission. GM Media estimates that the transportation cost saving fully covers a higher cost of the sustainable outdoor advertising solution. For example, the job of 10 banners (6m x 3m each) would be 50kg lighter and give up to 0.25€/m2 saving on transport costs alone.


Product improvements no longer need investment


Improvements to PVC-free banner materials are increasingly in line with the existing resources and competencies of advertising manufacturers. The previous solutions for environment-friendly materials required additional changes in production processes, such as banner sewing instead of usual welding and the acquisition of new competencies. This was not attractive to manufacturing companies as it required additional investment. Today the materials, offered by GM Media, have been improved to allow the use of existing technologies of outdoor banner production and to adapt all existing processes without additional investment.

Moreover, the current quality of PVC-free banner materials is not lower than the market-based environment unfriendly alternatives. The new materials are durable and tear-resistant – adapted for medium-term outdoor campaigns, perfect printing quality, maintaining perfect color brightness and precision. They are also compatible with UV and Latex print technologies.


“Change is not coming fast, but the transformation of mindset, combined with the cost-effective product improvements, will give a significant boost to that.” – claims Mantas Azusienis.

Added: 08 Sep 2020
GM Media shifts its focus to the Scandinavian large format media market

GM Media, a wholesaler of large format media, sets its business development prospects to the Scandinavian market and plans to intensify its operations in the region.

For this reason, the company is launching a new customer service model for the Scandinavian market. GM Media will now serve its customers directly, leaving aside the former sales model through wholesalers in individual countries. The company thus aims at maintaining a much closer contact with its customers, better understanding their business needs and responding more quickly and accurately.

“The Scandinavian market is attractive to us in terms of logistics. We also believe that the refined portfolio of GM Media products will meet the requirements of the market, well-known for its high standards for product quality and operational efficiency.“ – says Mantas Azusienis, director of GM Media.

GM Media, with its long-term experience in the digital print market, is constantly working on the search for high-efficiency digital print solutions, without compromising the usual quality standards of the market. This allowed the company to form a refined portfolio of products with excellent quality characteristics and an attractive cost structure, which is gaining an increasingly important aspect in both the Scandinavian and European markets.

Moreover, all the products are carefully selected in respect of ecology principles: all are PVC-free.

The Sales Manager for the Scandinavian Market, Glenn Aronsson, has sound experience in the digital print material market.
“We do believe that Glenn’s competence and deep knowledge of this field will allow us to accurately and promptly offer Scandinavian customers such solutions that will enable them to operate more efficiently and achieve results of impeccable quality.” – says Mantas Azusienis.