PUMP UP THE VOLUME: THESE PRINTERS, BIG AND SMALL, ARE EMBRACING THE FUTURE
We could all use some good news-and these printers' recent investments are encouraging. From books, direct mail to newspapers and good old general commercial printing, here are some interesting installations.
Worzalla's sheetfed pressroom is all manroland. The 100-year-old printer's new manroland web press is slated to be operational in August 2012.
WORZALLA PURCHASES WEB PRESS
Book printer Worzalla is adding a manroland Lithoman five-color web press. "We've successfully expanded into several niche markets," says Jim Fetherston, President and CEO. "After experiencing increased volume over the past year it was clear we needed additional capacity. The press is one of several major equipment acquisitions…Growing volume is a great problem to have." The Wisconsin printer also added digital short-run printing and binding capabilities as well as an additional casemaker.
INTELLIGENCER AMONG FIRST TO ADD KODAK PROSPER S10
Intelligencer Printing Co. (Lancaster, PA) is among the first printers in the US to add hybrid printing capabilities via a Kodak Prosper S10 Imprinting System. The configuration combines the speed and economies of web offset with high quality personalization.
"Our clients told us they wanted fast, efficient personalization capabilities for their direct mail campaigns," says Garry Richwine, Plant Manager of Intelligencer Printing. "We found Kodak offers what no other solution can: 'near' laser quality imaging on gloss coated paper at web press speeds. This is a significant capital expenditure at a time when many companies are pulling back."
FANTASTIC PLASTIC BUSINESS PROMPTS CARD PRINTER TO ADD A RAPIDA 105
CPI Card Group (Roseville, MN) recently installed a KBA Rapida 105 41-inch seven-color UV-equipped sheetfed press with tower coater with an eight-foot extended delivery and plastics package.
"For the past year, management at CPI Card Group has seen a dramatic increase in our order intake and the need to fulfill press orders with additional capacity," says Paul Boge, general manager of the U.S. prepaid debit market for CPI Card Group. "We're also seeking to increase more capabilities in-house, such as lenticular, to add to our services."
TWICE AS NICE: DS GRAPHICS ORDERS SM 106 PERFECTORS AT DRUPA
DS Graphics (Lowell, MA), ordered two Heidelberg Speedmaster XL 106 perfecting presses at drupa 2012. The 8- and 10-color models, each with aqueous coater, are capable of running at 18,000sph in perfecting mode on all substrates, and are the first two perfectors of this speed sold worldwide. The deal includes a multi-year commitment to use Saphira consumables, as well as a third press from Heidelberg."Prinect Inpress Control is an absolute game-changer," says Jim Bagley, Pressroom Manager.
"We estimate the shorter makereadies will save us more than $500,000 a year in paper alone."
Speedy makereadies enable Meridian to be competitive on jobs that might otherwise have been produced on a digital press, "But with quality that digital just can't touch," according to Steven Lee.
MERIDIAN PRINTING ADDS FIRST US GL40s
Meridian Printing (East Greenwhich, RI) recently added the first two six-color Komori Lithrone G40 presses in the US.
"The makeready has been phenomenal," says co-owner Steven Lee. "When we can have the customer out on press to review a sheet in 10 to 15 minutes, that's huge."
Meridian prints a lot of 10 micron stochastic work. "The dot transfer and therefore the water side of the press is absolutely critical," Lee explains. "The GL added a few new rollers to each unit and when you see how the water and ink transfer to produce clean backgrounds with 10 micron stochastic and reproducing the best dot we've ever seen with any line pattern, it's pretty exciting."
EXTRA, EXTRA, READ ALL ABOUT IT: NEWSDAY & HEARST UPGRADES
Newsday, Inc. has selected Goss International to complete a multi-press reconfiguration project that will improve print quality while doubling color capacity and press speeds. The enhanced press systems will go into production beginning in June at its facility in Melville, NY. The publisher operates multiple press lines to print its flagship Newsday daily newspaper.
Goss is combining components from existing Goss Metro presses at the site to create three enhanced press systems with the capacity to print 96 tabloid pages, including 64 full-color pages, at up to 60,000 impressions per hour. The project includes relocation of units and folders, modification of drive lines, repositioning of motors, and installation of customized stacking frames and platforming.
Hearst Corp. is bucking the trend in the North American newspaper industry and reaffirming its commitment to print with a major investment in a KBA Commander CL. The H-unit web press with four reelstands, four four-high towers and two folders is destined for the Hearst's upgraded
plant in Albany and will print the Times Union.
MUGAVERO IS THE NEW FACE OF MANROLAND SHEETFED
Michael Mugavero has been named manroland sheetfed's Managing Director/CEO for the US and Canada. Mugavero initially joined manroland sheetfed in 1992 and has been with the company almost his entire career. He has served as a Regional Sales Manager, General Manager, Vice President of Sales Within North America, manroland sheetfed GmbH will work closely with manroland web systems GmbH, now owned by L. Possehl & Co. In March, Possehl appointed Roland Ortbach to lead a new North American sales entity called manroland web systems Inc.
IT'S ALWAYS SUNNY IN NORTH ATTLEBORO
The Artcraft Co. (North Attleboro, MA) can claim bragging rights at the first 100-percent solar-powered printing facility in New England. "I want to go into the next generation doing the right thing for the communities in which we live and work," said owner John Dumouchel. The third-generation family-owned company is one the largest specialty print production facilities in New England.
More than 1,000 solar panels have been installed on the roof of Artcraft's production facility. Artcraft, an FSC-certified printer, is now powering 100% of its engraving facility, and 50% of its offset department with solar energy.
WHAT'S NEXT FOR SMALL COMMERCIAL PRINTERS?
NAPL NewsTalk Live is a 60-minute monthly broadcast featuring members of the NAPL Business Advisory Team. Missed a show? You can find the archives at www.napl.org as well as on iTunes.
Andy Paparozzi, NAPL chief economist, recently discussed "The Outlook for Quick and Small Commercial Printers," with Rick Schildgen, President of CL Graphics, (Crystal Lake, IL).
Sponsored by Xerox and moderated by NAPL Senior Consultant Howie Fenton, the discussion reviewed trends in sales, marketing, and employment.
SIZE DOESN'T MATTER
NAPL's Paparozzi defines quick printer as companies with annual sales of $3.5 million or less at one location. CL Graphics is a $2 million printer but Schildgen prefers to avoid labels. "I've never considered myself a quick printer," he said. "I don't feel the need to classify myself as small. We can do a lot of the things the big guys do…One of the things I have run into more this year than in the past is that I have actually competed against RR Donnelley on a number of projects. Projects quite frankly I would never have thought they would be getting into. We are talking about $3,000 jobs."
Schildgen describes his 2012 outlook as cautiously optimistic, a shared perspective according to Paparozzi. "That describes the consensus of participants in our Quick and Small Commercial Printer Trends Report as well," said the economist. "There's optimism in the sense that over two-thirds (67.5%) of our study group expect their sales to grow in 2012, nearly half (48.8%) by at least 5.0% and over one quarter (28.8%) by at least 10.0%. Overall, our study group expects sales growth of 4.6% on average this year, up from 2.8% last year."I WANT MY CL TV
CL Graphics' mix of old and new marketing vehicles include Schildgen's blog, printed and electronic newsletters, brochures and seminars. Promotional videos also have been effective. "We have created 25 to 30 videos ourselves and have our own YouTube channel," Schildgen said. "None of these are the high-end videos…We do them internally, all the editing and everything. And, as a result, we have been able to engage five different clients with video. We would like to expand that-it's a great opportunity." Paparozzi noted that social media offers excellent opportunities for printer to learn more about their clients' businesses. "We've talked about using social media to promote ourselves, to market and brand more effectively," said the economist. "But we can also use social media to learn more about our clients businesses: Invaluable market intelligence can be gained by following the best blogs, forums, LinkedIn Groups, etc. in the client's industry."
SEE YOU IN CHICAGO IN OCTOBER
NAPL's Owners Conference, immediately preceding Graph Expo, targets quick and small commercial printers. Speakers include Bill Farquharson (Aspire For); John Foley (Grow Socially); Joe Manos (MindFireInc.); Barb Pellow (InfoTrends), Nancy Proffitt ( Proffitt Management); Frank Romano (RIT), and Julie Shaffer (PIA). The 2012 conference will be held at the Doubletree Hotel Magnificent Mile in Chicago, Oct. 4-6.
TRELLEBORG: HOME OF REEVES, MACDERMID AND MORE
Based in Lodi, Italy, Trelleborg Printing Blankets serves the offset, digital and flexo markets. Founded in 1908, the company is probably best known to U.S. readers for two of the brands it acquired in the last few years: Reeves Brothers (2006) and MacDermid (2008). The company has manufacturing facilities in Italy, France, China and the USA. Its Spartanburg, SC, plant produces Vulcan blankets; its Morristown, TN, site is home to the Rollin brand. Trelleborg will open up a new blanket facility in Brazil this year. "We are determined to grow in the U.S.," says Thomas Linkenhall, PA Director, Trelleborg Printing Blankets. Citing the considerable capital improvements the company has made to the Morristown facility, he stressed the company's desire "to serve the U.S. market from a U.S. factory."
Drupa highlights include Vulcan Synthesis Evo, a next generation in sleeve development for heatset presses, as well as the Rollin MyCoat, a two-ply mylar based strippable coating blanket. A specially designed top rubber compound also makes the blanket suitable for use with both aqueous and UV coating applications. In partnership with Kodak, Trelleborg also has plans for a flexo plate.