Lexmark was founded on 27 March 1991 when the computer giant IBM spun off its printer division in order to sell it in its entirety to an investment consortium. The American IT firm was already developing printers in the 1950s to complement its first computers. In the time after the spin-off, the newly formed business venture still wore the name IBM, but with the subtitle of Lexmark. Today Lexmark offers a wide range of printing and imaging products, predominately laser printers and software for both businesses and private users.
Manufacturing under a foreign flag
In 2001 Lexmark joined forces with its former parent company to produce IBM laser printers. Operating under a different name is somewhat a tradition for Lexmark. The company produced ink jet printers for Compaq and laser and ink jet printers for Dell, both under each company's respective name.
Until the year 2002, Lexmark continued to produce typewriters. However, in the same year the company introduced its first colour ink jet printers with a resolution of 4,800 dpi, like the P915, which could deliver remarkably detailed images. Ink jet printers with Wi-Fi-capability were available from Lexmark only five years later. In the meantime, the company has developed a number of mobile printer solutions for modern technology such as printing apps for smartphones and tablets using local Wi-Fi, but also secure printing online using cloud services.
Lexmark's first laser printer was capable of printing 16 pages per minute in 1993! The next milestone occurred in 1997 when the company's first printer capable of a 1,200 x 1,200 dpi resolution was introduced, and then in 1998 the first ISO A3 laser colour printer capable of printing up to 12 pagers per minute.
In recent times, Lexmark hasn't experienced much commercial success. The company chose to end its production of ink jet printers for good in 2012. In 2013, Lexmark sold its ink division, including a factory in the Philippines, to the Japanese company Funai Electric. Also included in the selling price, estimated at 100 million USD, were around 1,500 patents. Accompanying their departure from the ink production market, Lexmark is suspending its production of printer hardware and software as well as its operation of Managed Print Services. This can be attributed to the four takeovers in the software division within two years.
Bye-Bye ink jets
No new ink jet printers are expected from Lexmark in the near future. Owners of Lexmark printers, such as the ColorJet P3120 or devices from the X Ink line, have no need to worry. All necessary toner and ink refills for these and other Lexmark machines are available in our shop.