MARCH/APRIL 2017 || THE VOICE OF THE INDUSTRY || WWW.IRISHPRINTER.IE
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MAR/APR 2017 CONTENTS
A round up of some of the latest news from the Irish print industry. Lilach Sapir, VP Marketing & Business Development at Massivit 3D, looks at how the retail sector could benefit from the 3D printing proposition.
Read about the latest inline coating, inspection, label production and thermal processing innovations.
Maev Martin talks to Daniel Rafferty, Manager, Epson Ireland, and Epson UK’s Pre Sales Technical Specialist Paul Restarick, about the interior décor demand that is driving growing sales of Epson’s SureColor SC-S series of wide format printers.
What’s New in Print
• Fespa Showing for New SpyderX • Creative Papers Go Digital • Mimaki Demonstrates 3D Solution • Image Transfer Award for Magic Touch • New Materials Collection • Colour Management Agreement
The Big Picture
Substrate and equipment suppliers continued to find innovative ways to inspire printers at this year’s Sign & Digital UK exhibition.
Maev Martin talks to Philip Brady, Head of Canon Ireland, about Canon’s decision to become the headline sponsor of the 40th Irish Print Awards.
28 Commercial Profile
In part two of our exclusive interview, Ali Jason Bazooband, Managing Director Innovation/ Marketing at Unitedprint.com SE, looks at the future of web-to-print with their new Unitedprint Shop Services partner shops.
We report on the launch of Canon’s first large format inkjet printer to use its new UVgel technology.
IST (UK) is fielding enquiries from printers about LED-UV technology on an almost daily basis. Joint Managing Director Chris Schofield tells Irish Printer why this could be the technology of choice for 2017.
32 Finishing Touches
Digital cutting, converting and finishing technology was front and centre at the Sign & Digital UK exhibition and at the Xeikon Café Packaging Innovations event last month.
number one investment priority for the publishing sector. I have often been accused of putting too much emphasis on developments in the world of digital technology. In my defense, the decline in investment in litho presses in the general commercial print sector meant that there was very little activity to report, and very little in the way of good news stories emanating from the litho side of the industry. But, with recent big ticket investments by Walsh Colour Print and Anglo Printers, there are signs that litho may be emerging from the shadows. So, in the interests of balance, and to see if the global trend reported by drupa is reflected in the Irish market, I would love to hear from Irish Printer readers who have recently made, or are planning to make, litho press investments in 2017 or 2018. While the well-established trends of falling run lengths and lead times, and an increasing number of jobs to be handled, isn’t likely to disappear from the market overnight, the Irish print industry is, and will continue to be, about more than digital.
IP_MarchApril_2017_Editors Letter.indd 2
elcome to the March/ April edition of Irish Printer magazine.
Maev Martin, Editor Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Tel: (01) 432 2271
Ireland’s recent recession hit the print industry hard as it coincided with a time when new print technologies were making the more traditional printing processes redundant. But the industry has re-emerged from the recession and, while some highly-regarded, and mainly litho, companies have unfortunately been lost, new, mainly digital, operators have emerged. In addition, many printers have not only embraced online developments, but are using social media as a gateway to showcase their services and the printed material that they are producing for their clients. Litho print was one of the biggest casualites of the recession. However, litho has held its own and worked hard to further enhance its offering, even entering successful partnerships with major digital players. And now its hard work seems to be paying off. One of the most interesting statistics to emerge from a recent drupa global trends survey, carried out by Printfuture, is that sheetfed litho is leading the global race when it comes to press investment plans. The drupa report, which harnessed data from almost 850 printers and 300+ suppliers, also revealed that sheetfed offset technology was still the
THE TEAM Editor: Maev Martin Editorial Manager: Mary Connaughton Creative Director: Jane Matthews Layout: Antoinette Sinclair Production Manager: Mary Connaughton Production: Claire Kiernan Printed by: Walsh Colour Print on Novatech Matt 150gsm supplied by Antalis Ireland. Contact: Irish Printer, Ashville Media Group, Old Stone Building, Blackhall Green, Dublin 7 Tel: (01) 432 2200 Web: www.irishprinter.ie
All rights reserved. Every care has been taken to ensure that the information contained in this magazine is accurate. The publishers cannot, however, accept responsibility for errors or omissions. Reproduction by any means in whole or in part without the permission of the publisher is prohibited. © Ashville Media Group 2017. All discounts, promotions and competitions contained in this magazine are run independently of Irish Printer. The promoter/advertiser is responsible for honouring the prize. ISSN 0790-2026
Front cover: Plus Print’s John Kenny with the Printer of the Year award.
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TEN TOP STORIES
drupa 2020 will take place from Tuesday 16 June to Friday 26 June 2020
drupa 2020 Dates Brought Forward The dates of the world’s most important trade fair for printing technologies will be brought forward by one week: drupa is to take place now from Tuesday, June 16th, to Friday, June 26th 2020. This was agreed by the drupa committee and Messe Düsseldorf at their meeting on February 15th. By changing the dates, Messe Düsseldorf is responding to requests voiced by both exhibitors and visitors alike. Meanwhile, Fespa’s biennial international exhibition for digital wide-format, screen and textile print will become an annual event from this year. Following the trade show in Hamburg from May 8th to 12th 2017, the next iterations will take place in Berlin and Munich in May 2018 and 2019 respectively. Fespa Digital, which has focused specifically on digital wide-format technologies, will be replaced by the wider reaching event. “Since 2006, our flagship Fespa event has alternated with Fespa Digital,” says Fespa CEO Neil Felton. “Feedback from both visitors and exhibitors is that, as digital becomes a mature technology,
they would prefer to see Fespa present one annual event, embracing both digital and analogue products and applications to reflect the diversity of their businesses.” Fespa divisional director Roz McGuinness says that suppliers of technology and consumables for screen print now have the opportunity to exhibit at Fespa every year. “It also ensures that we can present a consistent offering for our growing community of visitors from textile and other industrial sectors, and enables us to give greater continuity to recent initiatives such as Printeriors.” The ‘Dare To Print Different’ themed Fespa 2017 will comprise three zones - screen, digital wide format, and textile printing - encouraging visitors to explore the full spectrum of applications, including graphics and soft signage, industrial print, garments and promotional items, interior décor, surface decoration and vehicle wrapping. The European Sign Expo for non-printed signage will be co-located with the event. 700 international visitors are expected at Fespa 2017.
TEN TOP STORIES
PICTURED: Alan Brown, Managing Director, Xerox Ireland.
IBS Moves to Xerox Brand IBS, a Xerox Company, announced on March 1st that it had moved to the Xerox brand and will immediately operate as Xerox. Rebranding to Xerox is a significant milestone, due to the company’s ambitious plans to grow its document outsourcing business and expand its reach in the small to medium business segment. Xerox now employs over 760 people in Ireland. “Our appearance will change, but customers can expect to receive the same excellent level of service and responsiveness they have come to expect from us,” said Alan Brown, Managing Director, Xerox, Ireland. “We look forward to leveraging Xerox’s global brand and combining this with our local expertise, enabling us to be first to market with innovations for our customers. As digital technology advances, the way businesses and organisations communicate, connect and work is changing. By connecting the paper and digital worlds, Xerox helps to bring organisations on their digital journey. Working with the team I look forward to making 2017 a defining year for Xerox, our employees, customers and channel partners.” Xerox has been operating in Ireland for over 40 years. It has three businesses here, the first is the sales and marketing operation of Xerox in Ireland of which Alan Brown is the MD. Xerox Europe also resides here - it is a shared services and governance business that comprises business process functions, technical support, finance and HR that support Xerox’s European operations. The north east coast is the home of Xerox Technology, a manufacturing site based in Dundalk that is producing printing machines, electronic components and toner for the European market.
Sakurai Sales Up 300% in Europe Sakurai announced sales figures on February 8th for 2015 to 2016, which show an upturn in sales of almost 300% in Europe, underlining significant growth in demand for their screen printing machines. Sakurai has introduced a new customer partnership strategy, which is designed to help customers optimise machinery performance and create innovative applications that generate greater profits. “I think our recent success demonstrates a genuine renaissance in screen printing as we are helping our customer base to benefit from the potential that has always been possible,” says Claudio Moffa, Branch Manager of Sakurai in London. “The fact is that screen-printing achieves results that other print processes cannot compete with. This includes special effects, unrivalled accuracy, durable finish, and industrial speed. Our vision is to continue to enhance our direct partnership programme by working closely with customers to help them rediscover the power of screen printing. With the recent introduction of innovative automation technology, Sakurai is also leading the world of industrial printing as it meets the demands of Industry 4.0.” Sakurai plans to build upon this recent success with further initiatives to grow the screen printing community and they will be releasing further information on this during the year. The Japanese manufacturer plans to exhibit at Fespa in May, at LabelExpo in Brussels in September, and at the InPrint Show in Munich in November.
TEN TOP STORIES
IN BRIEF British Printing Industry Federation Figures Reflect Cautious Optimism The latest ‘Printing Outlook’ survey reveals that 43% of printers taking part in the poll increased output levels in the fourth quarter of 2016. A further 43% held output steady, while 14% experienced a decline in output. Exactly two-fifths of respondents predict that they will increase output levels in Q1 and 38% expect output levels to hold steady. Just over onefifth (22%) forecast that output will fall in Q1. The Q2 and Q3 reports, in the immediate aftermath of the EU referendum, showed that confidence levels took a hit. However, confidence has exhibited an improvement in Q4. Competitors pricing below cost continues to be the most voiced business concern - this was selected by over three-quarters (76%) of respondents, up from 64% previously, and there were additional comments referring to concerns over the effects of trade print sites offering
Ricoh Invests €6.5m in New Irish HQ Ricoh announced the opening of its new Irish headquarters on February 23rd, following a €6.5m investment. The HQ will welcome an additional 110 team members over the next three years as Ricoh looks to grow its Irish business to 190 people by the end of 2019. The jobs and investment were announced at the official opening of the new Irish base in Airside Business Park, Swords, Co. Dublin, in the presence of Mary Mitchell O’Connor TD, Minister for Jobs, Enterprise & Innovation. Ricoh says that the new HQ, combined with the investment and jobs, will help Ricoh Ireland to almost double its revenues from last year’s €16.4m to €32m in the next three years. Ricoh Ireland’s retained earnings and growing revenue stream will fund the investment. The 4,200 square foot facility will give customers the opportunity to see a live working environment of the future, with features including interactive whiteboards, unified communications, and the latest technology in document workflow. The new HQ will continue to focus on Ricoh Ireland’s core areas of business: managed document services, communications services, production print, business process services, software solutions and professional services. “Ireland is viewed as a key area of growth for Ricoh and we will continue to make significant investments in the company’s continued success here,” says Phil Keoghan, CEO, Ricoh UK and Ireland. “Its strong portfolio of indigenous and global accounts is testament to the outstanding performance of the Irish operation.” Ricoh has been operational in Ireland since 1980. It also has a document production centre in Glasnevin, which saw a separate €250K investment in 2016.
undervalued print. Paper and board prices remains the second ranked concern; this was selected by 39% of respondents (down from 50% last quarter). Access to skilled labour continues to be the third ranked concern - with 33% of respondents selecting it in Q4; up from 29% in Q3.
L-R: Pictured at the opening of Ricoh’s new Irish headquarters in Airside Business Park, Swords, Co Dublin are (l-r): Gary Hopwood, General Manager, Ricoh Ireland, Minister for Jobs, Enterprise & Innovation, Mary Mitchell O’Connor TD, and Phil Keoghan, CEO, Ricoh UK and Ireland
TEN TOP STORIES
PICTURED L-R: Carolyn Keogh, General Manager, Philip Brady, Head of Canon Ireland, John O’Loughlin, Director, Persona, Donnan Cullen, Key Account Manager, Canon, Robert Clarke, Sales Director, Persona, and Nick Keegan, CEO Green letterbox.
Persona Installs Canon’s Latest Inkjet Technology Security and graphic arts printer, Persona recently became the first print company in Ireland to install Canon’s Océ VarioPrint i300 inkjet press with Colorgrip, which enables high quality output on coated offset stocks, as well as uncoated stocks. To enable full bi-directional integrity, Canon also installed Océ Prisma production software for managing all output to the Canon imagePress, and now Océ varioPrint printers. The Persona installation is only the third installation of this technology in the UK and Ireland and brings the number of Océ VarioPrint i300 installations across Europe to 18. Canon launched the first high-speed sheet-fed inkjet printer in the company’s portfolio of production printing solutions in 2015. “The Océ VarioPrint i300 fills the speed and capacity gap that exists between conventional high-end toner-based cut sheet printers and entry-level continuous-feed inkjet presses,” says Donnán Cullen of Canon’s Industrial and Production Printing Group. “By doing so, Canon helps print businesses to find the right print solution for their needs and creates new market opportunities and applications.” Persona (Aluset) are one of the most prominent security and graphic arts printers in Ireland. Their work includes litho, digital
and scanning/document management. “Persona and Canon have worked very hard over the last three years to uncover what our customers are going to need in the future,” says Carolyn Keogh, General Manager, Persona. “Data integrity in the printing process, faster turnaround times, and speed of communication to our customer’s customers were some of the key areas that we worked on together. Throughput was always going to be important, but Canon showed us that the real gains for our customers are to be found in workflow. Canon were the only organisation that spoke our language and were able to stretch our understanding of the market we operate in. There is an excellent working relationship in place and our customers are the beneficiaries, which is the most rewarding part.” Donnán Cullen points out that, rather than wait for the market to adapt over time, Persona decided to adopt the latest inkjet technology and output management from Canon. “This is a significant step as it enables Persona to cost effectively bridge the enormous gap between digital toner systems and litho,” he says. “This new capability will also mean that Persona can react to its customers’ day to day needs even faster than before.” As well as Océ Colorgip technology and an output of 18,000 images per hour, the Océ varioPrint i300 features ‘sentry’ control on paper input, automated print head cleaning, and an Océ BLM600C booklet maker. With Canon’s assistance, Persona will be demonstrating its new capabilities to its customers over the coming months.
Best Year Ever for Unitedprint The online print shop Unitedprint, whose brands include print24, Easyprint and DDK Print Big, posted its highest ever earnings in 2016. These bumper revenues allowed the company to pay off all of its loans early, with the final payments made on December 31st, 2016. Holm Winkler, Managing Director for Finance/ HR/Legal, says that the company is “completely self-financing, debt-free, and with considerable capital resources amounting to tens of millions. Unitedprint will invest these newly released funds in its around 700 employees, with a view to further increasing productivity and efficiency, and continuously improving its range and performance. The company anticipates much lower prices and faster delivery times as a result, and will soon embark upon a major expansion to its product portfolio, both for its customers and the market in general.”
TEN TOP STORIES
Print Products Get Sharper Edge with Konica Minolta
Sheetfed Offset is Global Investment Priority Sheetfed litho is leading the global race when it comes to press investment plans, followed by digital toner cut sheet colour. That’s according to the fourth drupa global trends report, which also reveals that each of the four markets surveyed had a different number one press investment priority: commercial - digital toner cut sheet colour; publishing - sheetfed offset; packaging - flexo and functional; digital - inkjet rollfed colour. The drupa report harnesses data from almost 850 printers and 300 plus suppliers in a survey run by Printfuture. The packaging and functional (industrial/decorative) sectors appear to have the strongest prospects for growth in 2017. Looking at the underlying financial performance figures, printers reported a well established pattern of falling prices and squeezed margins, compensated for by increasing revenues assisted by higher utilisation. In terms of conventional print, the well-established trends of falling run lengths and lead times
Limerick-based Troy Marketing is reaping the business benefits of its most recent installation – a Konica Minolta bizhub Press C1060L, which was installed by Konica Minolta distributor MJ Flood last August. “The new bizhub C1060L has given our products a sharper edge and also brought more consistency to our production,”says Troy Marketing’s Hugh Flannery. The company has been a Konica Minolta customer for four years. “When we looked at all the options available and the excellent service and support we receive from MJ Flood, the choice was fairly obvious,” says Hugh. “Gordon Benson and Phil Schueler presented us with a deal that helps us expand our offering to our customers and cuts costs. It’s a win-win situation. Over the years we have found that the MJ Flood after L-R: Hugh Flannery, General Manager, install service and on-going Troy Marketing, Gordon Benson, MJ Flood training has been excellent, Limerick Branch Manager, and David Gardiner, which is a very important, Production Manager, Troy Marketing. but often overlooked, factor. Locally-based engineers with a quick response time is also vital to our business and is one of the reasons we choose to remain with MJ Flood. Top class service and reliability aside, we also need to be competitive in the market place, so when Phil and Gordon presented their new proposal we were very excited because we knew the service we were going to get, but now our bottom line was also going to be improved.” Last year Troy Marketing and MJ Flood embarked on a rightsizing exercise, which resulted in Troy Marketing consolidating its business and operating just two primary production systems. “Troy has always had an open collaborative relationship with M J Flood,” says Hugh. “We reviewed our production profile last year and, taking into account the advice of our account manager, as well as our increase in digital production volumes, we opted to upgrade our digital presses.” MJ Flood’s Print Production Manager, Phil Schueler says they are “delighted” to continue their relationship with the Castletroy-based company. “Last year we worked with Hugh and his main production manager, Dave Gardiner to come up with a solution to update their aging production print system at the University of Limerick, as well as supplying the new bizhub Press C1060L for their primary Limerick location.”
and an increasing number of jobs to be handled continued. What was different this year was a possible pause in the historic rise in the proportion of turnover that is digital print (28% of printers in 2015 reported that more than 25% of their turnover was digital, while the figure for 2016 was 27%). Nevertheless, digital print has an ever-increasing hold on functional print, with inkjet the dominant technology for most applications, up from 61% in 2014 to 74% in 2016. Similarly, digital continues to grow rapidly in commercial print, eg, wide format print installations are up from 37% in 2013 to 50% in 2016. The much talked of growth of digitally printed packaging is starting, with 34% of packaging printers offering digital print, up from 24% in 2014, although demand is patchy as yet. Even more striking was the clear fall in the number of web-to-print installations globally, down from 26% in 2015 to 23% in 2016.
TEN TOP STORIES Datapac Named HP Partner of the Year Datapac announced on March 23rd that it had been named HP Inc. Partner of the Year for UK and Ireland. The HP Partner Awards recognise and celebrate outstanding performance and accomplishments that raise the standard for business excellence, innovation, growth and customer satisfaction. Datapac became HP’s first Irish partner to scoop this award. It significantly grew revenues, new customer acquisitions and market share across all of the sectors in which it partners with HP, including printer, PC and laptop sales. Datapac, Ireland’s only multi-accredited HP Platinum Partner, was also recognised for its in-depth knowledge of the HP product suite and for achieving the highest level of training, standards and certification. This award for Datapac follows a highly successful year across its wider business as it achieved strong growth in a number of areas including print, security, business continuity and managed services. Datapac’s latest and most high profile partner award win follows other recent notable successes with HP, including being named as HP’s UK and Ireland Print Partner of the Year in 2014.
L-R: Pictured at the announcement that Datapac has been awarded HP Inc Partner of the Year for UK and Ireland are Patrick Kickham, Director, Datapac, Dion Weisler, President & Chief Executive Officer, HP Inc, and Nick Lazaridis, President EMEA, HP Inc.
our business for a number of years now, but we surveyed the whole market and looked at all our options,” says Bryan McClay, Production Director at GPS. “Having done that, we are convinced that this Fujifilm plate is the best on the market, not only in terms of reproduction, but also in handling and on-press
Bryan McClay, Production Director, GPS Colour Graphics Ltd.
manageability. The combination of GPS’s exacting processes and the consistent reliability of the Superia LH-PJE plate enable us to conform to international
GPS Steps Up Production With Fujifilm
colour standard ISO 12647 across all our presses, which is vital given that our clients are some of the UK and Ireland’s biggest
Belfast-based GPS Colour Graphics has chosen
brands.” GPS produces a wide range of printed collateral, ranging
Fujifilm Superia technology to boost its
from small runs produced digitally to runs of over half a million
production capacity, reduce costs and further
lithographically printed on three B1 perfecting presses. “We believe
improve its environmental credentials. Having
that the trend towards fewer, but bigger and more diversified
just moved to a new 125,000 square foot
printing companies will continue,” says Bryan. “Companies
purpose-built facility, GPS has invested in a
prospering in today’s so called ‘digital age’ have realised that
PlateRite HD 8900Z from Fujifilm. This high
putting ink on paper is not enough and they must now satisfy all
productivity B1+ thermal device will run
of their customers’ requirements with greater value added services
alongside GPS’s existing PlateRite 8800Z and give
and flexibility. The desire for something more tangible seems to be
the company the ability to produce in excess of
on the increase and can be witnessed in trends such as millennials
100 B1 plates per hour, 24 hours a day. GPS has
reverting back to vinyl as opposed to cloud based music. This bodes
also renewed its existing Superia LH-PJE plate
well for print; a tactile and tangible medium. While the pundits
supply contract with Fujifilm for another three
were busy writing the obituary for print, our response was and
years. “Fujifilm has been a valuable partner to
continues to be - believe in the power of print.”
E.S Digital 3D printed an over sized 1.7 metre replica of the chocolate shop Little Switzerland’s mascot
3D printing technology presents opportunities for design, marketing and promotional applications in the retail market. Lilach Sapir, VP Marketing & Business Development at Massivit 3D, looks at how businesses in this sector - or servicing this sector - could potentially benefit from the 3D printing proposition.
lthough to some retailers, 3D printing might seem like a relatively new phenomenon, it has been around for over three decades, transforming the production processes within the manufacturing world. Unless you have been living on the moon for the last few years, it is highly likely that the continued rise of 3D printing has not escaped your notice. Created around 30 years ago, the technology has gradually strengthened its foothold and is now widely used across a plethora of applications within industry sectors that include automotive, aerospace and medical. Despite its popularity in such sectors, 3D printing has yet to properly make its mark on the retail and exhibition industries. However, the good news is that the 3D printing opportunity might be within closer reach than retailers think. 3D printing technology has the flexibility, speed and price point to unlock huge new creative opportunities and drive profitable growth for users in the retail sector. Last year, Massivit 3D unveiled its own solution for this market - the Massivit 1800 3D printer. We believe that the Massivit 1800 3D printer offers something different and new for this sector. 3D printing allows retailers to create vibrant, eye-catching window displays, point of purchase (POP) stands, visual merchandising and exhibitions elements, and even bespoke retail outlets, that surpasses what can be achieved with traditional manufacturing. With the capability to very quickly produce largerthan-life high quality 3D pieces, we are beginning to see examples of it transforming the way highlevel advertising, visual merchandising and POP and POS displays are created within the retail space.
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Mass Personalisation Within Budget At the heart of this is our new proprietary technology, GDP (Gel Dispensing Printing), which cures rapidly under UV-light, enabling instant solidification of the printing material and consequently achieving very high-speed printing. Not only that, but the printer also utilises techniques that allow it to print non-vertical walls and ceilings, without the need to produce a solid object or intensive support structure. These unique material properties mean that the Massivit 1800 can produce impressive objects, while also reducing material costs and weight. One example of this advantage is a project from E.S. Digital, one of our Israeli customers. It was approached by ‘Bridge by Coca Cola’ (a start-up accelerator programme managed by Coca-Cola) to produce a host of eye-catching 3D printed interior decorations for its launch party, which would later also be housed inside its facility. Utilising the Massivit 1800’s ability to produce two individual parts simultaneously, E.S Digital 3D printed nine iconic Coca-Cola bottle caps in a variety of sizes in just five hours. These were then finished in a combination of Cokered, black and white paint, and self-adhesive vinyl to spell the word ‘The Bridge’. According to Eyal Shemesh, CEO from E.S Digital, The Bridge and Coca-Cola staff and executives were amazed by the quality and the ability for mass customisation. The company was so impressed by the results that it also commissioned a 3D printed human-sized CocaCola bottle to serve as the statement piece in the entrance to the building. Although super-sized, the bottle was remarkably lightweight and it was soon being passed around by guests as the unofficial party mascot, featuring in an endless number of selfies.
Building Brand Awareness The Coca-Cola example highlights the important role that the technology plays in increasing brand awareness. After all, it goes without saying that retailers and brands will always be seeking to maximise their budgets with as much wow-factor as possible. The ability to offer
Australian specialist 3D print provider OMUS constructed what is believed to be the world’s first 3D printed pop-up retail store for luxury fashion brand, Louis Vuitton.
Utilising the Massivit 1800’s ability to produce two individual parts simultaneously, E.S Digital 3D printed nine iconic Coca-Cola bottle caps in a variety of sizes in just five hours. These were then finished in a combination of Coke-red, black and white paint, and self-adhesive vinyl to spell the word ‘The Bridge’.
Coca Cola also commissioned a 3D printed human-sized Coca-Cola bottle to serve as the statement piece in the entrance to the building.
attention-grabbing, added-value visual communications that better engage target audiences achieves this. Moreover, it makes engaging, and subsequently retaining, such customers much easier. This is exemplified in another project which saw E.S Digital approached by new Israel-based chocolate shop, ‘Little Switzerland’ in a bid to strengthen its brand identity and make the store more appealing to its target market. E.S Digital 3D printed an over sized 1.7 metre tall (5.57 foot) replica of the company’s mascot to welcome shoppers and boost the company’s brand identity instore. Since its introduction, ‘Little Switzerland’ has reported an increase in sales, and in online visits.
provider OMUS, who applied its print expertise to construct what is believed to be the world’s first 3D printed pop-up retail store for luxury fashion brand, Louis Vuitton. The attention-grabbing 9 metre wide, 10 metre long and 2.7 metre high (29.5 foot x 32.8 foot x 8.85 foot) structure was 3D printed in under 18 days and served to promote the company’s latest menswear range. The entire display was finished in chrome mirror self-adhesive vinyl and adorned with distinctive Louis Vuitton designed animal prints matching the theme of the brand’s collection, which caught the gaze of shoppers at Sydney’s Westfield shopping centre.
Opening the Shutters to New Business
Time to Enter a New Dimension?
For retailers, incorporating 3D printing into your campaigns is a great means of differentiating your offer and enhancing how you capture and maintain customers’ attention. With recent studies suggesting that 3D advertising has five times the stopping power and four times the staying power of 2D advertising, it is clear why this is the technology for retail and advertising applications. 3D printing could also be a means of unlocking the door to new business. A prime example of this is Australian specialist 3D print
Whatever the driver, there are myriad benefits to integrating 3D printing into your marketing operations. For retailers and marketers, it offers the capability to very cost-effectively elevate applications to a new dimension with maximum impact. Looking ahead, I think we will see 3D printed retail displays and advertising campaigns become commonplace, as more companies realise the vast benefits that the technology provides in terms of customer engagement, brand awareness, and ROI.
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PRINTERS HAVE DESIGNS ON
Independent research conducted by Infosource shows that Epson’s SureColor SC-S series is the top selling eco-solvent technology in its class in Western Europe. Maev Martin talks to Daniel Rafferty, Manager, Epson Ireland, and Epson UK’s Pre Sales Technical Specialist Paul Restarick about the interior décor demand driving this growth.
T The 10-colour 64-inch SureColor SCS80600 uses the UltraChrome GS3 inkset.
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he Infosource research shows that Epson grew market share for these printers from fifth place, with just over nine per cent in 2015, to a league-topping 28.4% by the end of 2016. This success follows the launch of a new generation of 64-inch width Epson SureColor SC-S printers in January 2016 - the SureColor SC-S80600, SC-S60600 and SC-S40600 - which gives users the choice of four to 10 colours (including white and metallic) and up to 95.3sqm/hr single-pass productivity. They feature Epson’s permanent PrecisionCore TFP printheads with variable size ink droplet technology, delivering consistent 1440 x 1440 dpi output. “As a result, the range can create stunning results on a range of coated and uncoated substrates for indoor/outdoor signage, display graphics, posters and backlit panels, POS materials, vehicle wraps, wallpaper and photo canvases,” says Paul Restarick. “Since the launch, these printers have generated considerable interest from companies looking for technology that delivers quality, productivity, flexibility, ease of use and rapid ROI in one complete package. The hugely successful 10-colour 64-inch SureColor SC-S80600 uses the UltraChrome GS3 inkset, which includes red, white and metallic for accurate and consistent corporate colour match signage, and produces exceptional print quality, even on the cheapest monomeric vinyl. It also offers a low total cost of ownership and superb reliability.”
COVER STORY Pioneering Printers The SureColor SC range’s suitability for and success in the signage market has been well documented but Epson is now responding to a growing demand for press installations to service the interior design sector. “Epson is actively promoting the opportunities that the requirements of the interior design market can offer commercial printers in Ireland,” says Daniel Rafferty. “In fact, Epson Ireland has been responding to a growing demand for press installations to service the interior design sector.” Alphaset in Limerick, a print and design studio with a strong presence in museum interior design and kit, have invested in a SureColor SC-S40600. “The vast majority of their digital wall coverings are produced in-house and the SureColor gives them a fast and flexible printer that can produce just about everything, from a simple entrance sign to a complex interior,” says Daniel. “Also in Limerick, Pro-Image Sign Print & Tint use a SureColor SC-S80600 for their interior fit outs and wall graphics. The white and metallic inks of the SCS80600 have given them the ability to produce some very interesting interiors. Pro-Image chose the SC-S80600 because they wanted a printer with a huge colour gamut that gave a photographic quality output. Figure2Ground studio are a niche creative enterprise, providing surface design solutions for maketo-order digitally printed wall coverings, textiles, luxury vinyl tiles and glass curtains. Their tailored offering includes original surface designs and artwork specifically created and engineered for architects, specifiers, interior designers and fit out contractors. Using the SureColor SC-S80600, Agnes de Vlin has translated her fine art print series ‘Breeze’ into a range of super wide digitally printed wallcoverings for the contract interiors market. Black is a key colour in de Vlin’s palette and the improved density within the Epson Surecolor printing technology gives a black that appears infinitely deep and plays with the different expression of hues in her work.” Via their two local reseller partners, Infinity 2 and Irish Print Support, Epson Ireland are using these and other examples of what they have done already to promote the opportunities and creative possibility in this sector. This year they are also planning demonstration days where they will invite designers to come and see for themselves what can be achieved with their technology. “We also have the ability to support our potential users by offering to test materials and ideas for them in advance of purchasing a printer,” says Daniel. “This enables desginers, or indeed any potential end user, to have the confidence to express themselves knowing what can be achieved on the SureColor range.”
different substrates, we are running a cost calculator on our booth throughout the show.“ To show visitors the breadth of applications and production potential of the SureColor range, Epson will showcase a selection of high-quality signage and photographic products (banners, soft signage, vehicle wraps, POS, and back lit displays on a range of substrates, including vinyl and canvas); décor products (wallpaper, curtains, upholstery, splashbacks), customised 3D promotional and giftware products (e.g. phone cases, mugs, keyrings etc), and a selection of textile items (polyester and cotton T-shirts, tote bags, and fashion outfits). For the Printinteriors interior design showcase at Fespa, Epson will be demonstrating interior design production and applications, alongside signage and fashion/garment applications. “We will show wallpaper, deocrative window film and a selection of soft furnishings (curtains, cushions, upholstery), plus other décor products such as customised plates, cutlery, mugs, vases, and lampshades,” says Paul.
Print Interiors Showcase
Paul says that the print industry now expects to be able to produce the best quality products at the best price. “This is reflected in the success of our SureColor printers across the board - for signage, graphics and textiles (T shirts, fashion and interior décor),” he says. “The Sign & Digital UK exhibition, recently concluded, and Fespa in May are happening at just the right time as many printers are now looking to upgrade, expand and add new products to their portfolios. Our range of aqueous, eco-solvent and dye-sublimation SureColors are unbeatable when it comes to quality, productivity, versatility, ink efficiency and low cost of ownership. To demonstrate this, and to show visitors to Fespa exactly what it costs to produce different products on
MAIN IMAGE OPPOSITE: The white and metallic inks of the SC-S80600 have given Pro-Image the ability to produce some very interesting interiors. BELOW: Pro-Image use the SureColor SC-S80600 for their interior fit outs and wall graphics.
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ABOVE: Using the SureColor SC-S80600, Agnes de Vlin has translated her fine art print series ‘Breeze’ into a range of super wide digitally printed wallcoverings for the contract interiors market.
Paul highlights a number of what he believes to be unique features that combine to make the SureColors so successful. “The automatic tension controlled feed system, coupled with a larger diameter friction roller and motor controlled pressure rollers, means more consistent feed, so it is ideal for printing wallpaper, wall coverings, and large format advertising posters and hoardings, where the first drop needs to line up with its neighbour,” he says. “The Epson UltraChrome GS3 and GS3 with red inks are also Green Guard Gold certified, which means that no special ventilation is required during production, and they can be installed in restaurants, nurseries, schools, hospitals, etc. The inks also have an exceptional colour gamut from the four colour GS3 inks set, with the GS3 with red having an additional red and orange ink to increase the overall colour gamut for better Pantone/corporate colour accuracy, and the light inks to improve gradations. With the new ink technology, Epson engineers were able to achieve a higher chromogenic value in the GS3 and GS3 with red ink set, which means less ink required to achieve maximum density. Epson have also introduced a new HQ microweave mode, which dramatically reduces the appearance of visual banding, meaning jobs that would have had to been printed at 8 pass previously, can now be run at 6 pass with comparable quality, so there is faster throughput.”
What’s Trending The rapid growth of digital printing in the textile industry for both décor applications and fashion is driven by the design and business opportunities it enables. “The ability to print designs digitally and cost-effectively, and in high quality, onto a range of textiles is inspiring designers, textile manufacturers and retailers,” says Paul. “The trend for fast fashion and bespoke décor is well known, but it is far from established and we are really only experiencing the start of a trend that will grow significantly over the next few years. Sales of our SureColor SC-F2000 direct to garment printer have exploded across Europe. This isn’t just because T-shirt printing is an active market (which it has been for many years), it is more because companies want a printer they can depend on to work all day, every day, that needs very little maintenance and produces superb quality products. Our printer is the only t-shirt printer on the market where everything has been designed and made entirely by one company, including the dedicated CMYK + white ink and pre-treatment fluid. That is clearly having an impact on sales.”
PACKAGING The adhesive 62F delivers the no-label look even in moist surrounding.
The Latest Inspection Systems
Tresu and HP recently showcased a complete workflow for integrated inline coating and metallic finishes, Xeikon’s Packaging Innovations Café demonstrated how digital production can benefit a number of market segments, and EyeC will present its newest inspection systems for folding cartons and luxury packaging at Interpack in May,
ABOVE L-R: The EyeC ProofRunner Carton Pre-Feeder and the EyeC Proofiler 2100 DT.
Print quality inspection expert EyeC is presenting its newest inspection systems from May 4th to 10th at Interpack in Düsseldorf. The company will show visitors the newest in-line inspection technology for the 100% examination of folding cartons and luxury packaging. EyeC will show the EyeC ProofRunner Carton Pre-Feeder in action on the foldergluer from Kohmann. With this system, carton manufacturers can use the latest technologies directly in their existing processes without replacing their existing folder-gluers. EyeC says that the module can be easily connected to any foldergluer. The inspection system even checks the print quality of text, graphics, colours, and foil stamping, as well as 1-D and 2-D codes on the entire carton surface. Defective boxes are ejected via the ejection device of the folder-gluer before the production is delivered to the customer. The EyeC ProofRunner Carton HiLight system inspects the special combination of hot foil and blind embossing for high value materials such as complex luxury folding cartons. EyeC is demonstrating the use of this inspection system on the PrintChecker sorting unit from Kohmann while at Interpack. The in-line system is also offered as a pre-feeder module or a retrofit module. In addition, EyeC is presenting the Proofiler 1200 DT, a new flatbed scanner capable of scanning documents in size up to 1,270mm × 915mm and checking them against an approved PDF file in one inspection run. The EyeC Proofiler 1200 DT also offers other options such as checking colours, 1-D and 2-D codes, or braille.
PACKAGING Carton Coating with HP Indigo Tresu exhibited a complete workflow for integrated inline coating and metallic finishes on HP Indigo presses, for folding cartons and synthetic materials, at Dscoop Phoenix in Arizona in the US from March 1st to 4th. The Dscoop convention brings over 2,000 users of HP Indigo digital printing technology together with partners and vendors to share ideas and learn about new technologies, services and opportunities. Live demonstrations of the Tresu iCoat flexo coater, working with the HP Indigo 30000 digital press, showed how added-value post-print varnishes can be applied at speeds of up to 4,600 sheets/hour. The same production line featured a new compact flexo printing unit, integrated to a peristaltic pump, named Tresu Flexo Kit, for rapid application of high-gloss metallic, aerodyne, and other special effect coating finishes. Fast changeovers of sleeves and automatic chamber cleaning on both units minimize setup times to within five minutes. The company also featured its own iVarnish line of UV and water-based coating material that is specially formulated for the digital printing line. At Dscoop, Tresu presented new varnishes with improved adhesion properties so that plastic as well as board substrates may be run. One potential application is the retail loyalty card.
BELOW: A range of applications for digital transfer printing were shown on a wide variety of products.
New Clear-on-Clear Label Adhesive Clear-on-clear labels can be problematic if required to withstand wet conditions. The framing effect occurs when moisture causes an unsightly white haze to creep across the applied label from its edges. This problem is eliminated by the highly transparent label adhesive 62F, which is available from Herma. It was developed specifically for clear-on-clear applications in which moisture is a factor, as in the drinks industry. Even when tested by immersing in water for 96 hours, Herma claims that it failed to trigger any clouding. The adhesive is further characterised by high initial tack and very good resistance to oils and aqueous media. The permanent UVA adhesive is designed specifically for challenging and critical applications in the cosmetic, food and pharmaceutical industries in particular. Alongside its other benefits, the 62F grade is not subject to secondary cross-linking (unwanted hardening) in connection with multi-colour printing and prolonged UV curing. In view of its unconditional approval by the German test institute ISEGA, it is also suitable for direct contact with dry, moist and fatty foodstuffs. Herma says that the new adhesive 62F is most effective in combination with the label film Herma PP 50 transparent (grade 885) and that this film delivers good print quality with all the conventional printing techniques.
Digital Thermal Transfer Printing The advantages of digital thermal transfers using premium foil and automated application systems were presented by Diamond Photofoil at the Xeikon Café Packaging Innovations 2017 (March 28th to 31st). A range of applications for digital transfer printing were shown on a wide variety of products, including pens, packaging tubes, ice buckets, and point-of-sale displays. Diamond Photofoil’s high-resolution digital transfers applied in automated printing lines for tube products such as pen barrels and cosmetic packaging were demonstrated live. Developed by Diamond, Photofoil digital printed transfers provide full colour photo realistic printing for plastics with no origination
cost and short lead times direct from digital artwork. Companies that took part in the Xeikon Café Packaging Innovations 2017 event included AB Graphic International Ltd, Agfa Graphics, Avery Dennison, Esko, Flint Group - Narrow Web, Flint Group - Sheetfed, Flint Group Flexographic products, Highcon Systems Ltd, Hybrid Software NV, Iggesund Paperboard, Meech International, Metsä Board, Scodix, Stora Enso, Tresu Group, UPM Raflatac, Xeikon and Zund. Visitors saw innovative technology that demonstrated how digital production can be beneficial in a number of market segments:
Automotive: Digital printing with integrated MIS systems and finishing optimise the automotive supply chain and strengthen the dealer/customer relationship by personalising packaging. (Presented application: folding carton packaging).
Beverage & Wine and Spirits: Standing out is vital in this market. A perfect example is the wine and spirit market, with its use of numerous embellishments (foiling, spot varnishing, embossing, etc) and challenging materials to print the natural, structured facestock paper. (Presented applications: wet-glue labelling, wraparound labels, clear on clear, self-adhesive labels and hot beverage paper cups, and specifically for the wine and spirit market, folding carton and corrugated carton).
Food: At the Xeikon Café visitors discovered a digital production solution that has no mineral oils, no UV components and is food safe. (Presented applications: in-mould labelling, heat transfer labelling (therimage), selfadhesive labelling, folding carton, flexible packaging and pouches).
Health & Beauty: Special materials like transparent facestock which provide a no-label look on plastic containers and metalised folding carton boards are commonly used in this market and require a printing solution capable of delivering the highest quality. (Presented applications: self-adhesive labels, promotional heat transfer label, folding carton). BELOW: The Tresu iCoat coater, integrated with the HP Indigo digital press, ran synthetic as well as board substrates live at Dscoop Phoenix.
Media: The revival of vinyl records were one of the first drivers of digital printing in producing sleeves. At the Xeikon Café a 360° concept regarding promotional items that touch on the music industry was shown. (Presented application: folding carton).
Pharma: The Xeikon Café presented a full concept for this market, including folding carton, leaflets, labels and counter displays, with features such as track and trace and anti-counterfeit capability. (Presented applications: self-adhesive labels, leaflets and folding carton).
Promotional: Digital heat transfer decoration is of interest to self-adhesive label printers looking to diversify, or injection moulders looking to bring product decoration in-house. (Presented application: heat transfer labelling).
Xeikon unveils its new label production technology as the Flint Group rolls out its latest thermal processing system for flexographic printing plates. eikon added to its already extensive range of digital printing solutions for the label market when it launched its new PX3000 UV inkjet digital label press at the Xeikon Café Packaging Innovations 2017 event in Belgium (March 28th to 31st). The new press features a web width of 330mm (13 inches), and a maximum speed of 50m/min (164 ft/min). Colour configuration is CMYK plus white, with a print quality of 600x600 dpi. The new press is based on Xeikon’s Panther technology which uses PantherCure UV inks and is a UV inkjet platform that complements Xeikon’s dry toner digital label press portfolio. The development of Xeikon’s
production inkjet technology expands its product portfolio (Xeikon 3000 Series and Xeikon CX3, aka Cheetah) and application reach. Xeikon says that it developed the new Xeikon PX3000 digital label press in response to the growing need for new technologies in digital label printing, to drive new applications, and to produce them in the most efficient way. “With years of digital print experience and expertise, Xeikon acts as an advisor to label converters with the ability to closely analyse their requirements and offer the best suited solution, either UV inkjet or dry toner,” says Jeroen Van Bauwel, Xeikon’s Director Product Management. “The Xeikon PX3000 is engineered with the requirements of the label market and its end-users in mind. The Xeikon PX3000 is complementary to our dry toner presses. The choice of the label converter will be based on the end-use markets that they serve, whether it is food, health and beauty, industrial, wine and spirits, pharma, and beverage. Each of those markets have their specific needs - there is no onesize-fits-all. Inkjet and electro photography are different technologies, each with pros and cons. Xeikon created the market for dry toner printed labels, which is still growing significantly based on the value that dry toner technology offers converters and their customers. It delivers high quality and food safe label products in the short to mid-volume runs that are increasingly in demand. Through its deep experience in digital label production, and by listening to the needs of its customers, Xeikon identified an opportunity to widen its role in the diverse market for self-adhesive label applications where dry toner is not the most optimal solution, but UV inkjet printing can bring more value. A few examples include digitally printed labels, previously produced on UV flexo or screen-print, where a glossy appearance and tactile look and feel is desired, or a high durability requirement for a health and beauty or industrial end-use.”
OPPOSITE (MAIN IMAGE): Xeikon’s new PX3000 UV inkjet digital label press. ABOVE: Flint Group’s nyloflex Xpress thermal processing system.
Workflow Differentiation Both UV inkjet and dry toner digital presses are driven by the Xeikon engineered X-800 digital front-end. The X-800 accepts various file formats and tackles variable-data print jobs at rated engine speeds. “Intuitive and based on open standards, it enables the implementation of flexible and fully automated workflows in any production environment,” says Jeroen Van Bauwel, Xeikon’s Director Product Management. “Current Xeikon customers will appreciate the ability to stay within the well-known user interface and workflow that they have become accustomed to with their Xeikon 3000 series and Xeikon CX3 presses, while new customers will enjoy the X-800 workflow designed for a label production environment, with its very intuitive GUI, extreme efficiency in handling a multitude of short run label designs and jobs, and ease of operation. Digital printing is more than speed and output. It is about producing a number of jobs in the most effective and efficient way, which is why workflow is so crucial. The X-800 workflow is therefore a key differentiator of the Xeikon PX3000. From day one, we have been developing our own workflow technology dedicated to digital printing that allows customers to gain maximum value out of Xeikon’s dry toner, and now UV inkjet, presses. Our customers frequently tell us that by using the X-800 features, such as job optimizer and many others, they can set themselves apart from their competition.” Visitors to Labelexpo Europe in Brussels from September 25th to 28th will have the opportunity to see live demonstrations of the new UV inkjet label press. Commercial availability of the press is scheduled for October 2017.
Thermal Plate Processing Flint Group Flexographic Products debuted the new nyloflex Xpress thermal processing system for flexographic printing plates at the Xeikon Café. The Xpress is presently available in North America, and will be offered globally in the second half of 2017. “The new system incorporates the speed of thermal plate making with incredible plate and print quality and
offers a smart design with an enhanced user interface,” says Friedrich von Rechteren, Vice President Sales, EMEA & Global Marketing of Flint Group Flexographic Products. “The distinctive characteristics of the processor provide unprecedented control and allow for more consistent and stable plate production, encompassing thermal like you’ve never seen before. We believe our new, integrated solution, is in a class of its own. By combining the best in equipment design, plate development and engineered fabric, Flint Group is offering a system that leads to reduced costs, improved quality and improved sustainability. Intelligent configuration of the nyloflex Xpress thermal processor allows for fewer components, so there is less maintenance, less downtime and lower operating costs associated with its operation. The processor’s zoned heating system is built around a highly efficient IR assembly, which provides precise monitoring of the heat distribution across the drum width and into the plate. The perfectly controlled heat imparts better dimensional stability to the plate backing, affording increased stability and consistency to plate processing. The accurate regulation of the heat eliminates the need for a chiller.” The nyloflex thermal printing plates are at the heart of the processing system. The first of these plates - nyloflex XPH and nyloflex XPM digital printing plates - are specially developed to print on paper at high line screens of 200+ lpi. Flint claims that Nyloflex thermal plates are capable of printing the finest highlight dots up to 50% smaller in size than the minimum printed dot of the market leading thermal plate. The manufacturer will soon be releasing the nyloflex XFH digital flat top plate, which it describes as “the perfect choice” for printing brilliant solids on film substrates. Flint Group says that its new thermal plates are suitable for use with virtually any ink system, whether it is solvent-based, water-based, or UV. Further benefits can be realised in the engineered fabric of the nyloflex developer rolls, which are designed to be highly efficient and environmentally friendly. A unique fibre shape provides optimal surface area to retain molten polymer, resulting in a material that is 30% less dense, requires 33% less material to manufacture, and produces 33% less waste after use in plate processing than standard developer rolls. Nyloflex developer rolls are offered in three widths to maximise the efficiency of use with various plate sizes. The special fabric design and variable width options result in a material that is noticeably lighter and easier for operators to handle.
WHAT’S NEW IN PRINT
Colour Management Agreement
Print inspection specialists AVT recently announced a licensing agreement with colour technology specialist X-Rite. The new partnership certifies that AVT’s SpectraLab II Color Measurement System is compliant with X-Rite’s XRGA standard. AVT will also be offering an XRGA certification for its SpectraLab solutions. Developed as an ISO-compliant metrology standard for the graphic arts industry, the XRGA standard reduces colour measurement discrepancies and optimises colour measurement across multi-vendor colour networks. SpectraLab II, which was introduced at drupa 2016, is AVT’s latest generation of in-line spectral measurement for nearly any application, including various label substrates, paper, cartons, and transparent flexible packaging. SpectraLab II offers inline continuous colour measurements at high speeds, and shows colour results and trends throughout runs. It features real-time alerts to third-party reporting systems when colours shift out of tolerance.
Creative Papers Go Digital
Antalis has launched digital versions of its range of Arjowiggins Creative Papers. Branded Arjowiggins Digital, this product portfolio brings together the best sellers from across Arjowiggins Creative Papers’ brands: Conqueror, Curious Collection, Keaykolour, Rives and Pop’Set. It also includes Delos and Butterfly for creative packaging solutions. Compatible with the latest liquid and dry toner printing technologies, the remastered digital range consists of just under 170 products, and will be available worldwide in new weights, sizes, colours, textures and finishes. Paper packs ranging from 50 to 250 sheets will be available. Customers will also benefit from a broad range of digital formats adapted to dry toner presses and, in particular, to HP indigo liquid toner presses: SRA3+ formats of 460x320mm and 320x460mm, an extended 483x330mm and 330x483mm format, as well as the more recent 527x748mm and 748x527mm B2 format for the HP Indigo 10000 and the new HP Indigo 12000 model presented at drupa. Antalis will be offering a wider range of weights from 112g to 380g. Swatch books with samples of each reference have been created for both the liquid and dry toner ranges. Trial packs are also available for printers on request with 10 to 15 examples of each reference.
Fespa Showing for New SpyderX
Inca Digital recently announced that it will be exhibiting at Fespa 2017, the first time that the inkjet technologies pioneer has exhibited at Fespa in its own right. Taking centre stage on the Inca stand will be the latest version of the SpyderX. Originally featuring a 3.2 x 1.6m print area, the new SpyderX now features a 3.2 x 2m flatbed as well as roll-toroll printing capabilities. Launched in 2016, Inca Digital says that the SpyderX has been developed to meet demand for a cost-effective mid-range printer that delivers high quality prints on a wide variety of substrates. The SpyderX will print on a range of substrates throughout the show.
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WHAT’S NEW IN PRINT
Mimaki Demonstrates 3D Solution
ABOVE: A sample scale model of Kumamoto Castle printed on Mimaki’s new 3D printer.
Mimaki will display its full product portfolio for signs and displays and industrial printing at Fespa 2017 in Hamburg (May 8th to 12th), along with a technology demonstration of its new 3D printer. The company will also have a presence in the textile hall. Mimaki claims that its printer and ink technologies enable high-quality 3D printing that can create fine, precise and detailed products such as the intricate scale model of a castle and a traditional Japanese doll that will be shown on the Mimaki stand in the digital hall. Mimaki also claims that a unique feature of this printer is its clear ink that can be combined with colour ink to create half colour transparent models. “We are pleased to be introducing something totally new to the visitors with the technology demonstration of our 3D printing solution, a UV-curable fourcolour printer that will be able to generate products featuring more than 10 million colour combinations,” says Ronald van den Broek, General Manager Sales at Mimaki Europe. “While at drupa, we had samples on our stand and at Fespa, we will actually be showing a prototype of the printer itself. We have just shown this prototype in Japan for the first time at the 46th Japan Shop 2017, held from March 7th to 10th.” In other firsts for Fespa, Mimaki will be showing the JFX200-2531 production flatbed printer with its larger table for the first time on the continent.
Image Transfer Award for Magic Touch
The Magic Touch were awarded the accolade of ‘Best Image Transfer Product’ at Trophex 2017, the UK’s premier exhibition for the awards and recognition industry, hosted at the NEC in January, for their image transfer innovation. Using the latest in toner-based transfer technology, the company developed a new process to personalise football, rugby and various other sports balls with full colour logos and images. Until now the personalisation of balls for the promotions market has been mainly restricted to single colour designs applied using traditional pad or screen printing techniques which involves a degree of set-up and is not suitable for full colour or photographic images, and certainly not for individual designs. Using the ProSeries Oki 7411WT white-toner printer and CPM transfer paper, full colour images and logos can be applied to almost any type of ball using a modified ball-shaped platen manufactured by UK press manufacturer A.Adkins. According to The Magic Touch, the process is quick, easy and very durable, with the cost per printed panel at less than 10p per image. Over the past six months the company has successfully conducted trials with leading European ball manufacturers to ensure that the various PU surfaces available are compatible with the low-heat application and remain durable.
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New Materials Collection
Digitally printable media specialist Soyang Europe returned to Sign and Digital UK this year to launch its new materials collections to the sign and graphics market. They also offered advice across the board on digitally printable substrates for the sign and graphics industry, from staple products such as self-adhesive vinyl and textiles, through to more speciality products, such as wall coverings and magnetic products. The new consolidated collections include Print, Self-Adhesive, Décor and Textile. Soyang Europe has added new materials to its already extensive collection, including several new backlit products for UV printing, to serve the lightbox market.
THE BIG PICTURE
D Substrate and equipment suppliers continued to find innovative ways to inspire printers at this year’s Sign & Digital UK exhibition at Birmingham’s NEC from March 28th to 30th, whether it was Antalis’ American diner-themed stand, Canon’s collaborative approach, or Mimaki’s decision to debut its new JFX200-2531 LED UV flatbed printer to the UK and Ireland.
Inktec’s new Jetrix LXi8
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esigned to make an impact, Antalis’ stand had an American diner theme with almost everything, from the walls through to the floor and even light shades, constructed from materials that feature within Antalis’ range of visual communications media. Key products that were showcased included, for floor graphics, Drytac FloorTac, Drytac ScuffGuard, Coala Event Walk and the new Coala Floor & Wall, alongside wall graphics with Drytac HiGrab, Drytac Retac and Drytac SpotOn. Visitors were also able to view environmentally-friendly hanging signage with Antacote Lite and DISPA board, and vehicle graphics with Oracal 970. The Antalis’ expert team were also on hand for the three days to provide advice and support, as well as information on the Digital Academy training workshops and technical support service. The company also presented a workshop on ‘the dos and don’ts of colour management’. A key part of Canon’s show offering was the collaborative approach that it takes to service provision, demonstrating how it helps customers to grow and transform business models. Among the products on Canon’s stand were the Océ Arizona family, including the first showing at a UK print show of the Arizona 2280GT launched last year. Attendees were also able to experience live demonstrations on the Arizona 318 GLW system along with the artistic and imaginative capabilities delivered by Canon’s wide format printers, including the ColorWave 700 and the imagePROGRAF PRO 4000 models. Canon’s stand at Sign & Digital UK was also home to a bespoke applications gallery, which illustrated the possibilities of print for backlit displays and decorative surfaces. Mimaki’s exclusive UK and Irish distributor, Hybrid Services launched new small format LED UV and production direct-to-textile inkjet printers, as well as its range of solvent printers and printer/cutters, flatbed and grand format UV printers. Mimaki’s new Tx300P-1800 wide format textile printer made its UK debut at the show. It offers a broad range of fabric printing opportunities thanks to its flexible ink configuration options. As capable of producing fashion or furnishings as it is soft signage, the new 1.8 metre printer’s ability to run multiple ink sets, opens up a
THE BIG PICTURE
The Canon stand at Sign & Digital UK
vast array of applications on man made or natural fabrics. Also making its UK and Irish debut at the show was the new Mimaki JFX200-2531 LED UV flatbed printer. A recent development of the JFX200 series, it brings compatibility with media up to 2.5 x 3.1 metres, accommodating rigid signs, wall decorations, doors and other big items. Larger media is only one aspect of its increased capabilities - the JFX200-2531 can also accommodate two 8ft x 4ft signage boards, allowing print companies to benefit from a 20% increase in productivity, keeping the printer running continuously as an 8ft x 4ft board can be loaded while another 8ft x 4ft sheet is printed. “The larger JFX200-2531 adds further productivity for those companies with a focus on rigid signage and point of sale, printing to aluminium composite and foam core boards,” says Hybrid’s National Sales Manager, John de la Roche. “We really wanted the opportunity to show the new version of the JFX200 off to Sign & Digital UK visitors, so they can appreciate the added capacity - and what it can offer their printing business.” InkTec’s new high production Jetrix LXi8 LED-UV flatbed printer made its debut at Sign & Digital UK. The new 3.2 metre wide LXi8 was running at top speeds of over 206sqm per hour. The LXi8 also features InkTec’s latest generation LED-UV ink and Konica Minolta printheads, as well as a print resolution of 1,080 x 720dpi. It can accommodate a rigid media size of 3,200mm x 2,030mm and a rigid media thickness of 100mm. According to InkTec, the new LXi8 is perfect for short-term outdoor signage, clear film window graphics, interior decoration, furniture decoration, industrial applications, industrial keypads, spot varnishing and wood prints.
Signage Suite Automates Design and Production
HP recently released the HP Signage Suite app to help automate the design and production of signage orders. The new cloud-based app has been added to its HP Applications Centre, where it sits alongside HP Wall Art, the company’s cloud-based solutions, to create customised large-format applications. Signage Suite has been developed to help small sign and copy shops drive growth for roll-ups, banners and commercial posters. The product supports the full product line of HP Latex printers, as well as the HP DesignJet Z2600 and Z5600 PostScript printers. It will support additional printers in the future. A free online tool designed for easy integration into printers’ websites, Signage Suite helps boost e-commerce capabilities, including 24/7 availability to receive orders. The level of integration ranges from a basic hyperlink to a fully tailored experience. The HP Signage Suite features: three-step signage creation; 3D visualisation; pre-defined signage templates, saving the need for professional design skills; drag-and-drop for images, text, and logos; built-in access to content libraries; automated generation of print-ready PDFs; automatic job download with JDF support and PDF file versioning control; and pricing presented at checkout.
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Avery Dennison Offers Graphics Training in Dublin
Avery Dennison re-affirmed its commitment to the graphics sector with the opening of a new training facility for European graphics professionals in Dublin last August, along with a new UK centre in Milton Keynes, which opened in Q4 2016, to help installers to fine-tune professional skills. “We are seeing strong growth in vehicle and other types of wrapping in Ireland, so a local training facility made a lot of sense,” says Ronald Beij, Senior Sales Leader Graphics EU. “Centres like this one in Dublin are an extremely valuable new resource for our graphics partners across Europe. They help distributors, graphics designers, installers, and OEMs. Avery Dennison is well known for state-of-the-art training, and our specialist installer accreditation scheme means that courses at these centres result in concrete evidence of individuals’ commitment and their professional abilities.” Liam Hannon, Technical Support Specialist at Avery Dennison, says that the Dublin centre goes well beyond helping customers to understand Avery Dennison products and services. “Everything from basic to advanced techniques is covered here, with a mixture of classroom-based and practical training,” he says. “Of course, there are real benefits in knowing more about some of the high performance materials in the Avery Dennison portfolio, so installers can widen their skill set in a business that will always depend on manual labour. We aim to help installers reduce customer complaints, and Avery Dennison Specialist Installer status is very well respected. Being able to show accreditation gives businesses new opportunities to partner in high value projects, supported by extended performance warranties.” The syllabus on offer ranges from vehicle wrapping, including effective techniques for Avery Dennison Supreme Wrapping Film, through to the new Digital Cast Media products for vehicle wraps. To book a place on any of the workshops you can book directly at graphics.averydennison.eu/workshops.
PRINT AT LANDMARK AWARDS
As Canon Ireland marks its 30th anniversary in Ireland, Maev Martin talks to Philip Brady, Head of Canon Ireland, about Canon’s technological evolution, its big plans for the Irish market, and its decision to become the headline sponsor of the 40th Irish Print Awards.
Canon has made enormous strides in the large format sector of the commercial print market, and in the commercial print market generally, in the past few years. Why do you think that happened? The merging of the Océ and Canon business brought two key companies and technologies together and has, over time, grown our presence in the graphic arts and production print market. Our large format portfolio produces output that fulfils a variety of important roles, from the vibrant advertisements seen around town and the eye catching posters displayed in shops and stores, to the computer aided designs drawings produced by architectural offices.
The capabilities of digital print, including print on demand and variable data printing, are opening up opportunities in markets such as transactional, trans-promotional, direct mail, packaging and publishing. In 2013 we launched a marketing and sales campaign to grow our market share in both graphic arts and production print. The result of this campaign is evident in the latest InfoSource results, which show Canon with 39% of the wide format market and 18% of the production print market. At Canon Ireland we are very fortunate to be a direct operating company of Canon, which means that a lot of the barriers that competitors face do not exist for us, and this is a major selling point with our customers. We have direct access to the R&D and manufacturing facilities of Océ, the Netherlands and Océ Poing. Both of these facilities are well known to our customers as centres of excellence. Our directly employed technicians and consultants receive all their training from these two facilities and the entire support structure that flows from these centres makes its way directly to our customers. These facilities are very aware of the challenges our customers face and we meet these challenges head on with our local support teams. This has been a massive contributor to our growth in the market.
Canon has just installed one of the largest machines in Ireland this year with one of its key commercial print customers. How did the installation come about?
In 2015 Canon launched the Océ VarioPrint i300, the first high-speed sheet-fed inkjet printer in the company’s portfolio of production printing solutions. Based on innovative inkjet technology, the Océ VarioPrint i300 fills the speed and capacity gap that exists between conventional high-end toner-based cut sheet printers and entry-level continuous-feed inkjet presses. By doing so, Canon helps print businesses to find the right print solution for their needs and creates new market opportunities and applications. Persona, one of the most prominent security and graphic arts printers in Ireland, whose work includes litho, digital and scanning/document management, have recently installed Canon’s first Océ VarioPrint i300 inkjet press with Colorgrip, which enables high quality output on coated offset stocks as well as uncoated stocks. To enable full bi-directional integrity, Canon also installed Océ Prisma production software for managing all output to the Canon imagePress and now Océ varioPrint printers.
ABOVE: Some of the creative applications produced by the Océ Arizona flatbed printer.
Can you tell me about the technology that Canon is most keen to promote in the commercial print space?
Donnán Cullen, Industrial and Production Printing Group, Canon, points out that the versatile nature of the market in Ireland means that commercial printers must produce a number of diverse product ranges. “Litho printers now print smaller runs digitally, sign printers often have a digital SRA3 capability, and so on,” he says. “In the SRA3 market Canon has merged its imagePress technology with Océ’s front end Prisma controllers to produce an offering that enables graphic arts and transactional commercial printers to offer high quality with secure personalisation. Océ’s latest cut sheet and continuous inkjet systems enable Canon’s customer to bridge the gulf between digital toner
BELOW: The Océ VarioPrint i300, the first high-speed sheet-fed inkjet printer in Canon’s portfolio of production printing solutions.
systems and litho presses. Canon’s approach is to talk to commercial printers about their entire business rather than just talking about replacing pieces of equipment. It is because of this approach that our customers see us as part of their business development. Most of the conversations we have with our customers are about how to help them succeed. With this in mind, we also have to bring our customers the very best in innovation. Some of the stand out offerings include the Océ i300 cutsheet inkjet printer with the ability to print on offset coated media. In end user trials, sample output from the i300 was chosen over dry toner samples on most occasions! The Océ Arizona flatbed has long been considered the benchmark for quality in rigid media printing, and Canon’s new UV Gel technology will transform wide format roll to roll printing. This unique technology will soon be featured in a new line of roll-to-roll printers that will offer large format print providers an unprecedented combination of productivity, image quality, application range, automation and low cost of operation. Our foray into 3D printing with 3D Systems is gathering pace and will be a big area of concentration for us in the future. The Canon imagePress range is also making great strides in the Irish market, with new and long-term customers considering its output the closest to offset in the market. Canon’s task is to help its customers find new applications to bring to their customers and to strengthen current offerings. When we jointly understand what the end user requires, the right Canon technology presents itself.”
Why did Canon decide to become the headline sponsor of the Irish Print Awards this year?
2017 is a very important year for both Irish Printer magazine and Canon Ireland as this year marks the Irish Print Awards 40th anniversary and Canon Ireland’s 30th anniversary. These are major milestones for both the Irish print market and Canon so it was a natural fit. Also, the graphic arts and production print market is a major focus for Canon’s growth in Ireland and we believe we have an unrivalled product portfolio for this market. This event gives us a great opportunity to further engage with key players in the print industry and to showcase our technologies and capabilities. Through Canon’s acquisition of Océ, we are now seeing the blending of technologies from both companies to deliver best in class products. Canon has sponsored the Design and Print Excellence award in the Irish Print Awards for the past number of years and we are delighted to continue our sponsorship of this category in 2017. Canon has always had a strong emphasis on quality and the Design & Print Excellence award showcases the best that the Irish print industry has to offer.
The Aviva Stadium in Dublin 4, close to the city centre, is the venue for the 40th Irish Print Awards. How do you feel about the awards moving from a hotel venue to a sports stadium?
For many years Canon has been associated with sport through the sponsorship of soccer events like the Euros and Champions League. And Canon has recently announced its sponsorship of the 2019 Rugby World Cup in Japan. As the home of both Irish soccer and rugby, the Aviva Stadium felt like the natural venue to host this event. Aviva Ireland is also one of Canon’s largest corporate customers, so this mix of sport and customer is a perfect combination for us.
What is Canon’s #unleashprint campaign all about and what impact do you believe it has made on your customers and potential customers?
The #unleashprint campaign is about exploring new ideas, discovering existing new possibilities, and pushing the boundaries of print. As a market leader in production print, Canon supports customers in making print more creative. #Unleashprint can help you make the most of opportunities in print by combining industry leading technology, future proof products, and specialist expertise. The #unleashprint campaign is dedicated to helping customers maximise their potential. We believe the campaign has allowed us to form partnerships with our customers and prospective customers, rather than just making a sale. By partnership we mean sharing our knowledge of the industry, providing marketing training, and utilising our business development resources to help grow their business. By adopting a partner-led approach, we are able to support our customers’ goals through our expertise and service offerings.
FROM TOP: The ImagePRESS C850 press; The Oce Arizona flatbed printer
Can you tell me about the sectors of the commercial print market that Canon believes will continue to benefit from what appears to be a rediscovery of the power of print?
The world of digital print is an exciting and dynamic place to be. Talk of a ‘decline in print’ is a thing of the past as the industry builds confidence and gathers momentum. From stunning interior décor to the emergence of booksof-one, high quality photobooks and the transformation of multichannel communications, digital print is reshaping the very perception of print. While the industry has seen some consolidation and certain areas suffered from commoditisation, print has never been more relevant. It has faced the challenges from electronic alternatives such as online media, email marketing and e-books and kept its important place in our lives. Print service providers continue to push the boundaries, seize new opportunities and grow. In 2015, global printing output was projected to reach €870bn and annual growth of two per cent per year is predicted through until 2020. One of the primary reasons for this industry-wide growth is an increase in demand for the highervalue printed products.
Canon’s educational business programme in Ireland began last year with a workshop on Marketing for Printers. Is Canon planning any other workshops or seminars during 2017?
Talk of a ‘decline in print’ is a thing of the past as the industry builds confidence and gathers momentum... digital print is reshaping the very perception of print.
The Essential Business Builder programme is part of our structured customer journey that provides customers with the support they need to grow their print operation. This market leading business development programme provides education, advice and support through information guides, workshops and one-to-one mentoring. Due to the success of our 2016 workshops we will be hosting additional mentoring workshops in the coming months. The content of these workshops is focused on sales and marketing and the intention is to help printers be more creative and innovative. The Essential Business Builder programme includes the Marketing for Printers, Digital & Cross-Media Marketing, and Planning for Change workshops. If print companies would like further information or wish to attend any of these workshops they can email firstname.lastname@example.org
Great News for Signmakers & Printers Trimwel recently opened a custom training facility in Park West in Dublin Operated by Wrapmasters.ie and approved by 3M, the facility offers small group wrap training and courses on all aspects of sign making.
has been offering printers and signmakers high quality materials for over 30 years and now Trimwel and Wrapmasters are offering approved training courses to the Irish print and signmaking market. ‘’Knowing the correct way to apply material and the different types of materials greatly reduces the chance of failure and allows for a much quicker installation,” says Trimwel Managing Director Nick Little. “Profit is lost if you have to re-visit a job and now we can offer printers and their employees the training they need.’ This training is being spearheaded by Wrapmasters. ie, established by Michael O’Connell, who has over 18 years of Irish industry experience. Having identified a very clear gap in the market for ‘real’ small group training, Wrapmasters offers personalised and individual attention. “When I talked to
customers about training courses they had participated in, in many cases they felt that class size was an issue,” he says. “For that reason, Wrapmasters has a maximum of six people on a course and this allows for personal training over the two days.” This is an ideal time to get training as 3M have just released a new version of their 180 wrap material and laminate, 180mC. This new ‘Micro Comply’ version not only offers 3M Comply (air release) adhesive but also the 3Ms Controltac repositionable adhesive system that makes for a much easier and quicker installation.
Comply Adhesive & Micro Technology From the most eye-popping of wall graphics to the sleekest of vehicle wraps, no wrapper can achieve optimal performance without the right wrap film and adhesive. That is why 3M is excited to announce the launch of 3MTM Print Wrap Film IJ180mC-10. Featuring the many high-quality benefits of Comply Adhesive with micro technology, these 3M IJ180mC
films will accelerate installation and provide even more design options, making them the ideal solution for any application including vehicles, boats, walls and more. 3M Print Wrap Film IJ180mC-10 provides customers with a go-to film that covers all the bases of application needs. With advanced slideability and initial tack optimized for wraps, installers will be able to move the film effortlessly across any application surface and expertly reposition the product to the perfect location after first contact. Along with improved liner release, IJ180mC-10 also provides a non-visible comply pattern to ensure a smooth, bubble-free finish to a completed wrap. The launch of 3M Print Wrap Film IJ180mC-10 also includes the introduction of clear and metallic options – 3MTM Print Wrap Film IJ180mC-114 and 3MTM Print Wrap Film IJ180mC-120. These additions bolster the versatility of the IJ180mC family, offering wrap shops the ability to craft never been done before wraps with the clear IJ180mC-114, and shimmering accents and bold statements of the metallic IJ180mC-120.
FIRST UVGEL PRINTER GETS
EUROPEAN ROLL OUT
he Océ Colorado 1640 is Canon Europe’s first 64 inch roll-to-roll wide format printer built on new Canon UVgel technology. The four colour machine is said to fill a gap in the market between what Canon Europe Executive VP Jeppe Frandsen defines as ‘low-end ecosolvent and latex, and high-end UV and latex and UV roll-to-roll printers’ and brings together the benefits of eco-solvent, latex and UV technologies. The first Colorado went into Comdatek in Germany in March. Commercial sales will begin after its customer launch at Fespa 2017, with the first deliveries expected in the third quarter of the year. “Through the introduction of the Océ Colorado 1640 printer with UVgel technology, Canon is delivering the optimal balance of quality, productivity, automation, application range and operating cost,” says Mark Lawn, Director, Graphic & Communications Group, Canon Europe. “This new printer redefines the boundaries of roll-to-roll printing.”
The Océ Colorado 1640 has a top speed of 159 square metres per hour for applications such as billboards or outdoor banners. Even at the highest level of quality for close-up indoor applications, the printer operates at a speed of 40 square metres per hour. Canon UVgel ink is instantly ‘pinned’ on contact with the substrate, resulting in a highly controlled and precisely positioned dot with minimal gain. By minimising ink spread and
The Océ Colorado 1640
Canon launched its first large format inkjet printer using its new UVgel technology at an event in Venlo in the Netherlands on March 8th. Speaking to Irish Printer last autumn Canon Ireland’s CEO Philip Brady described the technology as ‘revolutionary and groundbreaking.’
coalescence on the media, the required volume of ink can be printed in each pass, delivering rich, intense images at ultra high speed. The low temperature LED-UV curing system moves independently from the printing carriage so that the prints are instantly dry and ready for finishing or laminating. Productivity is further boosted by the dual-roll configuration of the Océ Colorado 1640, which enables the printer to switch between two types and sizes of media on the fly, for fast production of mixed applications.
Canon says that the Océ Colorado 1640’s precise, instantly ‘pinned’ UVgel dot produces sharp images with minimal dot gain and virtually no satellites, while the stable, highly controlled dot ensures ‘superb colour consistency’ from swathe to swathe. Canon UVgel printheads incorporate patented continuous nozzle monitoring using acoustic sampling to detect and correct any underperforming nozzles, allowing for unattended printing. The printer’s robust build ensures stable media handling. The system also uses an optical feedback loop that continuously monitors media advance to automatically correct the subsequent step size as needed.
The Océ Colorado 1640 is suitable for businesses producing both indoor and outdoor applications, including posters, banners, signage, POS, billboards, window graphics, decals and bespoke wall coverings. UVgel is a low-heat process using LED curing. UVgel ink contains no water, which reduces media swelling, and reproduces a large colour gamut comparable with eco solvent inks, but with the environmental and safety profile of latex and UV inks. Canon claims that UVgel prints are durable, colour-fast and highly resistant to the stresses typical of outdoor applications, while the odourless and VCL free prints satisfy the highest environmental standards for sensitive indoor uses.
The Océ Colorado 1640 is designed for low total cost of operation to accelerate return on investment. Canon claims that UVgel technology reduces ink consumption by as much as 40% compared with competitive technologies, thanks to the way that it jets ink, significantly reduced maintenance inks, and by removing the need for optimisers. Canon also claims that the printer’s dual-roll media system reduces operating handling time by up to a third compared to competitive technologies. The Océ Colorado 1640 will be followed by a family of Uvgelbased printers over the coming months, including a system aimed at the soft signage textile print market. Contact email@example.com for more information.
ANNOUNCING OUR HEADLINE SPONSOR
WHERE? AVIVA STADIUM SAVE THE DATE THURSDAY 30TH NOVEMBER
FOR SPONSORSHIP OPPORTUNITIES CONTACT FIONA LARMON ON 086 821 0203 OR EMAIL FIONA.LARMON@ASHVILLEMEDIAGROUP.COM
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION
CONTACT JACINTA O’ROURKE ON 01 432 2201 OR EMAIL JACINTA.OROURKE@ASHVILLE.COM
THANK YOU TO LAST YEAR’S SPONSORS
Irish Printing Federation
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TheSunday Business Post
With its Print24, Easyprint, Unitedprint, Firstprint, Getprint, Printwhat, DDK PRINT BIG, Infowerk and Unitedprint Shop Services (USS) brands, Unitedprint. com SE is one of Europeâ€™s leading online print shops. In part two of our exclusive interview, ALI JASON Bazooband, Managing Director Innovation/Marketing, looks at the future of web-to-print with the new USS partner shops.
In part one of our interview you explained how Unitedprint.com SE does web-to-print and you mentioned WtP 3.0. What exactly is that?
For us, WtP 3.0 has a name - Unitedprint Shop Services (USS). This is nothing other than a real, disruptive innovation of a scale virtually inconceivable to many people, and sometimes even to us. Through our USS partner shops, we give print shops a hugely powerful e-commerce
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tool which can literally transform them into professional WtP players overnight. In doing so, we are heralding a new age, which we call WtP 3.0. In the early days of WtP 1.0, online printers were initially ridiculed and commonly considered an unimportant, fleeting fad, but they soon proved themselves to be serious competitors to print shops. Print shops then increasingly shifted from own production to the reseller business, and we suddenly became their welcome suppliers. That was the WtP 2.0 age. Today, we see WtP 3.0 as a system of partners all on the same level. In other words, those who were competitors in the original WtP 1.0 times have become the customers of online print shops through WtP 2.0 print shops, and we have now become our customersâ€™ sales partners through WtP 3.0. It is precisely for these pros that we have created a WtP sales platform under our USS Unitedprint Shop Services brand (de-demo-shop. unitedprintshopservices.com).
Are we about to enter a new era where commercial printers no longer view online printers as evil competitors, with online printers opening the doors to online printing for all print shops? This new era of WtP 3.0 has already begun! We already have over 20,000 registrations across Europe, and some
shops have already gone live. Our USS partner shops mark the start of the WtP 3.0 generation, where all print shops of all sizes, anywhere, can now instantly adopt the full, unlimited range of options offered by the biggest, most successful online print shops, and use these for themselves. It is a business model that massively speeds up both our partners’ business, as well as our own growth, by utilising our scaling and networking. It is the ultimate win-win. In addition to their previous local and/or regional bricks-and-mortar shop, print companies are able to offer hundreds of new products in millions of variations, and great services and features that are made possible by e-commerce. And they can decide themselves, at any time, whether and what they produce themselves, and at what price, whether to assign production to us, or to hire someone else to do it.
There are some very exciting developments currently going on in the collaboration with KBA, which will in future be able to provide a customised KBA WtP shop solution based on our USS OP (operating system).
How is it beneficial for Unitedprint to boost the local and regional printing providers on site with the USS partner shops?
We believe that this local and regional market requires specific on-site know-how and, through efficient local and regional WtP players, has enormous potential to be intensively developed. Through our USS shops, we provide all partners with a perfect e-commerce tool to help them unlock their own market with professional WtP products. It is important for us to service these precise local levels, which our own range can never access intensively or deeply enough. We have previously mainly focused on the ‘vast empires’, and advertised accordingly, because this is where most of the profit is earned, but local and regional print shops are perfectly familiar with their market within a 25-kilometre radius. We can never service these customers as well, closely and directly as our local and
regional partners. We now equip these print shops with a hugely powerful tool, enabling them to develop their own market on site - a WtP shop with which the USS partner can literally offer hundreds of new products, in addition to its previous products and services overnight. And it can, of course, freely decide which sales prices it sets, and which of these products it produces itself or assigns to service providers (like us). Our mission is to be the professional WtP sales partner for precisely these local and regional print shops. Think global. Print local. There is a huge market for print companies in online printing, without them having to invest millions of Euros. That is what we have done in recent years, and will continue to do, for our own front-end, back-end and editing software for online design to enable us to market product lines extending from print products and photo products, to advertising equipment, textile products and more. Our USS partner shops break down the marketentry barriers for local and regional print shops, easily and consistently giving you access to this market and its customers.
You already have over 20,000 registrations across Europe, all wanting to seize this opportunity. Are you not afraid of your current customers becoming competitors if they suddenly all go online as WtP providers?
OPPOSITE: Ali Jason Bazooband, Managing Director Innovation/Marketing, Unitedprint.com SE.
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Absolutely not, because we simply create enormous added value for everyone through our open infrastructure, skills and power. A new philosophy and technology won’t jeopardise existing customer relationships and products if additional advantages are generated for our USS partners and their customers. On the other hand, if there are insurmountable market-entry barriers or newly established traditional print shops wait so long to introduce new technology that the market already becomes saturated with it and/or they only introduce the new technology reactively and against their will, often to counter attacks made by faster newcomers, the fear of being squeezed out is justified, and usually becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. Through our USS partner shops, we not only break down market-entry barriers but simultaneously provide a powerful tool for successful e-commerce. Most print shops, regardless of size, still wouldn’t be aware of the huge market potential available with WtP literally on their doorstep. Here’s a sample calculation: If a local or regional print shop generates only five orders a day through our free USS partner shop, it can realistically earn an additional €250,000 in highly profitable sales for itself every year. However, given that print shops using our USS partner shops can receive not just five, but hundreds or thousands of orders a day, the sheer scale of the possibilities offered by WtP becomes clear for all to see. Even in 2016, the potential for WtP is still less than 10% tapped, so it’s a great and early opportunity for print shops of all sizes to keep seizing the chance to offer their customers and market lots of new and additional online print products, and thus directly become professional e-commerce players.
It is understandable that breaking down barriers is one correct step. Building trust in your USS partner-shop model is another. Many traditional print shops don’t have a concrete understanding of how the online printing system works. How do you build a basis of trust for your future USS partners? Through performance and transparency. And, most importantly, through results because that’s ultimately what counts in business. Our strategy is not about following the short-term growth expectations of investors who are controlled by the finance markets. Nor are we about generating short-term profit. We are about creating longterm value. It is not our philosophy to get rich quick without creating something lasting. We want to grow profitably for the long haul through our own impressive service, not through unsustainable turnover achieved with extreme financial expense. This is precisely what distinguishes us, as an owner-run family business, from capital market investors, connects us with local and regional printers on site, and makes us a reliable partner operating on an equal level. We offer our partners an experienced team of WtP experts, which is available to proactively assist in all commercial and technical matters, as well as marketing.
You also mention a USS network. What does that mean?
In order for a system to survive, it must be able to adapt to internal and external changes. It must learn how to learn from changes, sensibly utilise these, and further develop independently. At the same time, it cannot lose its own identity. That is why our approach is shifting from one-dimensional brand portals to an additional networked USS partner shop system. This makes us more comprehensive than isolated distribution methods and limited value chains. It is not just about identifying fundamental disruptive market changes and then knowing you have to cater to the necessary market requirements – it is about creating the required survival strategy and using the necessary tools consistently. Jeff Bezos, the founder of Amazon, sums it up perfectly: “It’s the customers who decide where they buy, not us.”
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ABOVE: A USS DemoShop.
What benefit does the USS network provide to individual partners?
The benefit for all participants increases in every network as soon as new participants join. With our USS partner shop programme, we combine our existing Unitedprint scaling effects with additional USS networking. The larger our network becomes, the more partners, users and customers it attracts - and the more exponentially successful it becomes for all USS network partners. If we look at it in terms of supply, we already have a huge range of products, services and features that we sell through the USS partner shops. And with each new USS partner, we have the opportunity to incorporate more great new products into the network. As such, the USS network becomes increasingly attractive, and the partner contributing the new product to the USS network automatically becomes an international supplier of its product for the entire USS network. But, if that wasn’t enough, another dimension becomes apparent when we co-operate with system partners like Koenig & Bauer AG and make our USS shop system available to everyone as a ‘WtP operating system’. There are some very exciting developments currently going on in the collaboration with KBA, which will in future be able to provide a customised KBA WtP shop solution based on our USS OP (operating system). Through this tool, KBA enables its customers around the world to generate the new and additional orders that print shops can produce on their KBA machinery. More KBA customer orders generated by WtP also means more printers sold by KBA, which is a perfect win-win-win model for everyone: for print shops, because they are given a professional WtP tool to generate new markets and customers through a vast range of products and services with additional orders; for system partners like KBA, because they can enable their customers to profitably grow with contemporary WtP e-commerce overnight and thus invest in new/additional printers; and, of course, for ourselves, because the USS network effect allows us to generate exponential global growth, and therefore keep developing our already prominent WtP market position.
What future innovation does Unitedprint have to offer to the commercial print market?
There is always something new to learn. A USS network such as this has an enormous and constantly growing need for raw materials, aids and supplies, shipping services, and all kinds of other services. And all this comes on top of Unitedprint’s already very large purchase volume. Not only does our USS shop system offer our partners a great WtP sales tool, our USS system, as an attractive purchase source, also provides huge advantages for our partners. This enables all local and regional print shops to enjoy, right from the outset, the attractive ordering options of a mighty purchase platform in which every single USS partner benefits from the top purchasing conditions of one of Europe’s largest online print shops. This not only applies to online products but also to all traditionally sold products outside the USS network. In other words, our USS partners get direct purchase benefits from the USS system without having to generate a single online order through their WtP shop. With our USS shops, we provide a WtP system never before seen on the printing market, which enables every USS partner to act in their own, entrepreneurial manner.
IST (UK) says it is fielding enquiries almost daily about LED-UV technology, some from printers simply needing a better understanding of the technology, and some wanting site visits and prices. Joint Managing Director Chris Schofield tells Irish Printer why this could be the technology of choice for 2017.
Although LED-UV and LEUV options use up to 60% less energy, it is not the environmental benefit that is firing up interest in the technology,” he says. “Printers are expected to supply shorter runs to increasingly tight deadlines. The cost benefit of being able to take sheets or boards dry off the end of the press for immediate processing and delivery, combined with the lift in aesthetic finish (for which read added value and profit), are the key motivating factors.” IST (UK) can offer UV, LED-UV or LE-UV retrofits, and even systems which can switch between different options. “And we can fit onto almost any make of press,” he says. “We can offer consultancy on the trends in UV of all types and discuss the technical aspects, costings and options for consumables.” LED-UV cartridges are expensive but have a very long life, expected to be a minimum of 20,000 hours. The construction of the LED bars means that individual modules of LED arrays can be exchanged on site, rather than sending the complete unit back for repair. The fact that the LED-UV unit switches on and off during production, as substrates pass by, helps to keeps energy usage down. There is a chance for printers who want to know more about the technology and its potential to attend the international UV Days conference run by IST Metz in Nurtingen, Germany. With around 1,000 guests across four days, UV Days is the largest event of its kind. This year, it will take place from May 15th to 18th and will focus on UV, LED-UV and IR, with a particular focus on food packaging. LUV, which is IST Metz’s name for its LED-UV package, includes the lamp module, a control cabinet, water chiller and screen software for ease of operation. A retrofit takes about two days to complete and the installation comes with a 12 month warranty.
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GEW (EC) Ltd will be exhibiting at this year’s ICE shows in Munich and Orlando to present the latest releases of their line of specialist UV curing systems for the coating and converting industries. Both events will be an opportunity to update print industry professionals on the full range of UV equipment for use with coating and converting machinery supplied by the British manufacturer. GEW has become a key player in the design and manufacture of UV systems for web coating lines up to 2.5m wide. A range of UV curing equipment is available to cater for all processes, including short wave mercury arc lamps for hotmelt adhesives and long wave UV LEDs for specialist coatings and laminating. GEW will show conventional mercury arc UV lamps, LED, hybrid UV systems, inert-gas UV curing and hybrid power supplies. GEW’s inert atmosphere curing solution can be supplied as a complete new system or as a retrofit, and comes with an embedded precision oxygen level analyser to ensure process consistency and production efficiency. The inert-gas control panel gives the operator a visual feedback and enables him or her to simply set the required ppm level, and the control automatically adjusts the inert gas flow to match the set O2 level and optimise the curing process. The latest advanced power supplies from GEW can run both LED and conventional mercury arc curing technology
as changes in job requirements or ink formulations dictate.
Digital cutting, converting and finishing technology was front and centre at the Sign & Digital UK exhibition and at the Xeikon Café Packaging Innovations event last month.
GM's DC330Hybrid laser die cutter
ünd UK showcased a Zünd G3 3XL3200 fitted with the new 3.6kW Router (RM-L), a powerful spindle featuring a pneumatic clamping system capable of routing materials at depths of up to 50mm and working with bits with shaft diameters of up to 10mm. It also features Zünd’s Integrated Minimal Quantity Lubrication for processing aluminium or ACM and makes routing on uneven surfaces easy with precise compensation for material thickness. The new router is also compatible with Zünd’s Automatic Router Bit Changer and an assortment of Zünd router bits. “The Zünd G3 digital cutting machine is an ideal addition to a modern sign-making workshop,” says Peter Giddings, Sales Director, Zünd Plotting Systems (UK) Ltd. “Thanks to its modular tool and materialhandling systems, it can be tailored to meet the exact requirements of each user, with the potential for retrofitted expansions or upgrades at any time. It offers an energy-efficient, adjustable vacuum table for precise cutting of a wide range
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of common sign-making materials while maintaining a robust build quality suitable for 24/7 operation at maximum automation levels.” Efficiencies in the digital production of multi-layer and self-adhesive labels were presented by Danish label converting and finishing specialist GM at Xeikon’s ‘Xeikon Café Packaging Innovations’ event. The GM in-register lamination module and DC330Hybrid laser die cutter were featured in live digital printing solutions. The GM in-register lamination unit utilises the full web width, doubling capacity and offering full flexibility in the label design and size – a distinct advantage in promoting giveaways, detailed instructions, multilingual information, and displaying legal text. Advanced full servo control ensures perfect register between the top and bottom layer, and the system automatically controls web tension and register, while providing instant feedback to the user on the built-in touch screen. Tool-less finishing of digitally printed self-adhesive labels, in addition to leaflets and folding carton for smaller runs and shorter lead times, were also demonstrated by the DC330Hybrid laser die cutter in automotive, health and beauty, pharmaceutical, promotional, beverage, wine and spirits segments. To counter the challenges of smaller runs and shorter lead times, GM offers the DC330Hybrid laser and die combo converter. With the hybrid, fast day-to-day labels can be made on the laser and longer runs or difficult materials can be processed on the conventional semirotary die cut module. Offering zero changeover time and no die plate cost, GM claims that the laser die cutter is a perfect partner for a digital press, and is also a good example of ‘Industry 4.0’ automation where the press and the finishing machine are tightly connected.
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To celebrate the 40TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE IRISH PRINT AWARDS we are offering SPECIAL ADVERTISING RATES IN 2017 contact FIONA LARMON, Commercial Manager on 086 821 0203 or email email@example.com Advertise_2L_IP.indd 1
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