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CONTENTS Volume 51, Number 6
A drupa Education Dr. Martin Habekost of Ryerson’s GCM program describes which technologies caught his attention in Düsseldorf plus… Ten printing students share their perspectives for the most-interesting trend or technology at drupa 2012
NEWS Rob Ford loses the plastic bag in Toronto, Westkey Graphics of Burnaby purchases Menzies, and remembering Aulward’s Paul Prince
CALENDAR July 2012 Peter Ebner runs a print-sales Webinar, the CMA hosts its annual awards gala, and Graph Expo prepares for post-drupa
LETTERPRESS Crowdfunding Fine Press Vancouver’s Jarrett Morrison drives support of a three-volume Pride and Prejudice letterpress book through an online campaign
PACKAGING Esko Building in New Orleans With a record turnout at the EskoWorld 2012 user conference, Mark Quinlan, President of Esko Americas, describes four years of growth
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NICK HOWARD The Stuffed Monkey One of the world’s press experts discusses the impact of drupa prototypes and why he is disappointed after all of the digital hype
VICTORIA GAITSKELL Running a Healthy In-plant Sitting down with the University Health Network’s veteran print leader, who discusses the challenges and opportunities of in-house production
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June 1977 The Apple II goes on sale, Elvis Presley performs for the last time, and first reports from the golden days of drupa
Resources 23 Services to the Trade Cover Illustration: Clive Chan
33 Marketplace JUNE 2012 • PRINTACTION • 3
RESPONSIBLE FORESTRY. When you consider that only 10% of the world’s forests are certiﬁed, we have a long way to go. The good news is that there are a number of credible forest certiﬁcation programs. And each one, including SFI, encourages responsible forestry. For more on forest certiﬁcation and what you can do, visit www.sﬁprogram.org.
Market Disruption hile the global printing community over the past couple of months has focused on technological disruption, because of the quadrennial drupa tradeshow in Germany, the Canadian printing community has seen significant market disruption over the same time period. Three major merger-and-acquisition moves have created enormous operations, as the community’s long awaited consolidation amongst mid- to large-sized plants might finally be underway. The Canadian M&A activity began in late-April when The Lowe-Martin Group acquired Dollco and effectively joined two of the country’s most powerful privately owned printers. The combination of these two large-scale operations, both based in Ottawa, creates a $100-million business with a range of services, from large web-offset runs to toner-driven personalization. Dollco had been owned and operated by the Nicholds family since 1956. A month later, Westkey Graphics Ltd. of Burnaby, British Columbia, purchased the well-known Menzies Graphics Group. Founded in 1946, Menzies, much like Dollco, was a generational family business that aggressively expanded across Western Canada over the past decade. The new structure of Westkey Graphics also results in one of Canada’s largest printing operations, now with operations in Calgary, Grande Prairie, Edmonton, Kamloops, Kelowna and Vancouver. The third recent and significant Canadian-printing M&A came in mid-June when Mitchell Press of Burnaby purchased the assets of Teldon Print Media. While selling its Print Media division, Teldon continues to operate the other divisions of its business, including Teldon Marketing Products and Alive Publishing. Teldon was established in 1969 in Vancouver. Mitchell Press, now in its third generation of family ownership, was founded in 1928. The company claims its purchase of Teldon Print Media makes it the Pacific Northwest’s largest independently owned provider of heatset-web printing services. All three of these purchases have certainly altered Canada’s printing landscape in a matter of a couple of months. In this timeframe, the industry has also seen smaller but still significant moves, such as Toronto-based RP Graphics’ merger with Green Dot Litho and Vancouver-based MET Fine Printer’s purchase of Larsen’s Bookbinding. The Toronto-area market has seen a handful of mid-sized plant closures in the past few weeks. All of this business activity suggests the remainder of 2012 could finish with a high level of consolidation, which many Canadian printers, particularly in Toronto, have been anticipating for a couple of years. Of course, there are a number of variables driving the need to merge or acquire, but most significantly is the simple fact that several aging operations, family-run for decades, are faced with fewer and fewer succession options. Meanwhile, the technologies displayed at drupa 2012 indicate that many mid-sized commercial printing operations will need to make significant investments in the near future to alter their workflow and production processes. This might not necessarily mean a production-strength inkjet overhaul in the next couple of years, but even the relatively smaller advances in sheetfed offset presses, ultimately equating to million-dollar investments, must be considered if an traditional printer hopes to remain competitive in price and productivity. drupa 2012 was a unique staging of potentially disruptive technology, as seen in the past few issues of PrintAction’s coverage on the German tradeshow. This issue will be our last featuring primary drupa coverage, which is rounded out by the technology perspectives of Canada’s printing future. Alongside the lead drupa article by Dr. Martin Habekost, a professor within Ryerson’s Graphic Communications Management program, 10 post-secondary students share what they found to be most interesting at drupa 2012. Jon Robinson, Editor
Canada’s Graphic Communications Magazine. Proudly published for two generations. Editor Jon Robinson • 416.665.7333 ext. 30 • firstname.lastname@example.org Associate Editor Clive Chan • 416.665.7333 ext. 25 • email@example.com Contributing Writers Zac Bolan, Clint Bolte, Peter Ebner, Chris Fraser, Victoria Gaitskell, Dr. Martin Habekost, Nick Howard, Thad McIlroy, Gordon Pritchard, Josh Ramsbottom, Nicole Rycroft, Andrew Tribute, Trish Witkowski Publisher Sara Young • 416.665.7333 ext. 31 • firstname.lastname@example.org Associate Publisher Stephen Longmire • 416.665.7333 ext. 26 • email@example.com Production Manager Anders Kohler • 416.665.7333 ext. 37 • firstname.lastname@example.org Intern Tiffany Kay Garcia • 416.665.7333 ext. 34 • email@example.com Advertising Sales Sara Young • 416.665.7333 ext. 31 • firstname.lastname@example.org Stephen Longmire • 416.665.7333 ext. 26 • email@example.com Circulation ADPIC Subscription Services • 800.363.3261 • firstname.lastname@example.org PrintAction is published by Youngblood Publishing Limited and is Canada’s only national monthly publication serving the graphic arts industry. ISSN 1481-9287. Annual Subscriptions: Canada: $31.15 ($27.57 + $3.58 HST) United States: CN$69.99; Other Foreign: CN$139.99
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ROB FORD, Mayor of Toronto, in June faced a surprise vote in city council to ban retailers from offering plastic bags to customers. Ford was originally pushing to scrap the city’s 5¢ bag fee by July 1, which indeed passed with a vote of 23 to 21, but the council then also passed a motion to eliminate the use of plastic bags on January 1, 2013 – with a 27 to 17 vote total. While many environmental groups supported the plastic-bag ban, Ford was in clear opposition. Speaking with AM640, a local Toronto station, on the morning after the ban, Ford said: “It’s the dumbest thing council has done and council has done some dumb things.”
ALFIE KARMAL, President and CEO of Westkey Graphics based in Burnaby, British Columbia, moved to purchase Menzies Graphics Group, which has operations in Calgary, Grande Prairie, Edmonton, Kamloops and Kelowna. Menzies has been a family-run business since 1946 and today provides offset, toner, business-form, cheque, envelope, wide-format, and label printing services. Providing similar services, in addition to a significant focus on distribution and fulfillment, Westkey has been in business for over 50 years and currently has operations in Vancouver, Kelowna, Edmonton and Calgary. The combination of Westkey and Menzies creates one of the largest printing operations in Western Canada. Westkey alone employs over 100 staff members across its network.
MARK ROBINSON and Doug Robinson, owners of Tri-Tech Canada, updated their prepress with a Heidelberg Prinect workflow and an Epson 9990 proofing device. The installation allows Tri-Tech, a 40-inch commercial print shop out of Pickering, Ontario, to produce hybrid 350-line screens. Tri-Tech has been proMOYER PRINTING’s Stew Budge, Louise viding printing services for the Greater Moyer and Al Moyer celebrate the installa- Toronto Area since 1974 and specializes tion of a DigiXpress system into their in the production of catalogues, magaNorth Bay shop. Purchased through Press- zines, and brochures. The company runs down Services (PDS), DigiXpress feeds en- a full in-house bindery department. velopes, post cards, labels, banners and card stock up to 14 points, from 3 x 5 inches up to 12 x 18 inches. In a single pass, DigiXpress can produce around 50 full-colour, personalized envelopes per minute, or up to 36 full-colour 11 x 8.5-inch pages per minute (40 ppm in monochrome). Founded in 1982, Moyer primarily focuses on providing services for both French and English customers in the North Bay region. DEJONG PRINTING began operating under a new name, nexGen Grafix Inc., as Henk DeJong prepares to build upon his father’s 33-year success. Henk DeJong has long been involved with the family business, but his father, Stuart DeJong, is now taking a less active role with the company, which was founded in 1979. In January 2012, DeJong Printing installed a new 29inch, 6-colour Komori Lithrone SX629C, its third new Komori press in the last seven years. A couple of months earlier, DeJong Printing also installed a 5-colour Kodak NexPress SX2700 to boost its toner production. According the Henk DeJong, the FSC-certified operation still produces about 70 percent of its work with offset presses, while the remaining 30 percent is handled by its toner capabilities. 6 • PRINTACTION • JUNE 2012
PROPRINT SERVICES of Toronto, which focuses on large-format point-of-purchase production, installed Canada’s first Inca Onset S40. Exclusively distributed by Fujifilm on a global basis, the Onset S40, which has been in Proprint’s shop for nearly six months, reaches a maximum speed of 470 m2/hour, which equates to 94 full beds – handling a 5 x 10-foot sheet. Printing on substrates up to 50mm thick, the Onset S40 comes as a standard CMYK configuration but can installed, as with Proprint, in a 6-color configuration, including light cyan and light magenta. Proprint also invested in a new Esko Kongsberg XP Auto finishing table, with a 63 x 126-inch bed.
MEG WHITMAN, President and CEO of HP, announced plans to cut the technology giant’s workforce by eight percent, equating to approximately 27,000 jobs, by the end of 2014. The cuts will save the company between $3 and $3.5 billion, annually. At the same time, the company announced it has seen a three percent drop in its revenues in the last quarter when compared to a year ago, a figure equating to roughly a 30 percent fall in profits. MARK NORLOCK becomes KBA’s Regional Sales Manager for Canada, covering the provinces of Ontario, Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Alberta and the Northwest Territories. (KBR Graphics is responsible for KBA sales and distribution in Quebec and eastern provinces.) Norlock was most recently part of Kodak’s inkjet printing solutions sales unit and prior to that served as Sales Manager for manroland Canada. He also served in other notable graphic arts companies such as Xerox, Scitex, Indigo Canada and Linotype-Hell Canada. PAUL PRINCE, who contributed 56 years of his life to the Canadian printing industry, including the founding of Aulward Graphics, passed away in his 75th year after a short battle with cancer. Fresh out of high school in 1953, Prince began his printing career at the Picton Times. He then worked for the Trentonian newspaper and Gananoque Reporter before moving to Toronto to become part of The Globe and Mail’s mammoth printing department. In 1967, well before adopting the name Aulward Graphics, Prince started a small printing operation in CUSTOM PRINTERS’ Peter Barron, Prepress Grimsby, Ontario, called Inteprint, which Operator, Mike Recoskie, Production Man- he eventually merged with Reiger Litho of ager, and Ken Charron, Technology Archi- Hamilton after acquiring it in 1984. The tect, oversaw the installation of a Heidelberg new operation was called Reiger Press, and Suprasetter H 74 with automatic plate was soon renamed as Aulward Graphics. loading. Founded in 1972, Custom Printers The company is now based in Hamilton of Renfrew, Ontario, recently expanded its and run by Paul’s son, Blaine Prince. operations through mergers with IDP Graphics of Oshawa, Ontario, and a firm called Brideau. These moves formed an entity called The IDP Group. In addition to traditional offset printing services, Custom Printers also provides wide-format graphics and toner production.
DARRELL FRIESEN, co-owner of Jet Label in Edmonton, celebrates becoming the first Canadian company to install HP’s Indigo WS6600 press. Self-described as Western Canada’s largest label manufacturer, Jet Label over the past decade expanded from its initial Edmonton facility to operations in Calgary, Saskatoon, Prince George, Vancouver and Winnipeg. The Indigo WS6600 was first introduced to the market in September 2011.
SUN CHEMICAL CANADA, led by President Rod Staveley, boosted its commitment to the Quebec printing market with a $3.1 million investment to consolidate four facilities into a new 50,000-square-foot ink manufacturing plant. The new Laval plant is to replace nearby facilities in Ottawa, Quebec City, Boucherville and Anjou. The Laval facility, employing 32 full-time staff, has ink dispensers on-site for demonstrations and the manufacturing of spot-colour inks, as well as three roll mills, several vertical post mixers and smaller mixers, and an internal laboratory for quality control and colour-matching chemistry. The plant will produce solvent, water-based, UV and paste inks for the packaging, corrugated, sheetfed, heatset and coldset markets.
CANON plans to buy back up to 50 billion yen ($660 million Canadian) worth of its own shares over the next few weeks, up to July 27. Large corporations typically make these investments when executives feel the stock is undervalued on the open market. The $660 million buy back, amounting to just 1.4 percent of its outstanding shares (17.4 million shares), also indicates the size Canon. With more than 25,000 global employees, Canon in its 2011 fiscal year generated net sales of 2,160,732 million yen, or $28.5 billion.
Giesbrecht, President and owner. Pur- of its newspapers ceasing their publishing chased from Spicers, the NexPress of a Sunday edition. The Calgary Herald, SX2700 runs a maximum sheet size of 14 Edmonton Journal, and the Ottawa Citizen inches by 26 inches, while reaching a will no longer publish on Sundays and the maximum print speed of 83 A4-size National Post will continue its trend of not pages per minutes, simplex. City Press publishing on Mondays over the summer CITY PRESS of Winnipeg becomes the first also added Kodak’s Intelligent Color op- months. The company also announced commercial printer in Manitoba to install tion on the press, as well as a fifth imag- plans to centralize more of its operations Kodak’s NexPress SX2700 toner press. ing unit on the NexPress. into Hamilton. Postmedia had an $11 Founded in 1932, City Press has remillion loss in its most-recent financial mained a family-run company for the PAUL GODFREY, CEO of Postmedia Network, quarter, while still suffering from a longpast eight decades and is now led by Ken approved a round of cuts resulting in three term debt of over $516 million. grammable cutter with up to 198 presets to minimize setup time between jobs. The machine can handle sheets 670 millimeters wide and cut stacks up to 80 millimeters tall. Ram Printing was founded in 1980.
GEORGE MAZZAFERRO, President of RP Graphics Group, moved to merge the nearby operations of Green Dot Litho into his Mississauga facility. Green Dot Litho branded itself an environmentally responsible printer through the use of chemistry-free plates and soy-based inks. RP Graphics was founded in 1978. The company recently invested in a new 40inch Komori GL640 with a H-UV drying system, as well as a second Inca Spyder 320 machine for large-format inkjet production. RP Graphics runs three Xerox iGen presses, as well as in-house bindery and a mailing and fulfillment centre. CANOPY, an environmentally focused NGO in Vancouver, assisted Sprint Nextel’s development of an aggressive new Paper & Print Procurement Policy to support sustainable forest management. Sprint set a goal to increase its use of recycled content to 25 percent by 2017, while also committing to help develop alternative paper-fibre sources and to reduce its use of paper with toxic chlorine bleaching. Sprint’s also announced a goal to have at least 50 percent of its print suppliers comply with its environmental and social criteria by the end 2012, and at least 90 percent to comply by 2017. FRANÇOIS OLIVIER, President and CEO of Transcontinental Inc., announced the renewal of six key contracts – all with major Canadian retail clients – worth $1.5 billion in revenues. Some of these contracts are directly tied to Transcontinental’s March 1, 2012, purchase of Quad Graphics’ Canadian plants. These deals not only include printing and flyer distribution, but also Transcontinental’s digital marketing services such as e-flyers, email marketing and mobile marketing. The contracts range from three to six years. IDENTIFICATION MULTI SOLUTIONS of Montreal, which services and distributes product identification and labeling technologies, adds the Memjet-driven Colordyne CDT 1600 C printer to its product line. IMS has been named as the machine’s distributor for Eastern Canada. Based around Memjet’s inkjet technology, the Colordyne CDT 1600 C makes labels that are two to 8½ inches wide, have a resolution 1,600 ppi and a maximum speed of 12 inches per second. CHRIS MOSE, Bindery Supervisor at Ram Printing and Promotions, oversaw the installation of a new Polar 66 cutter into Lloydminster, Alberta. Purchased from Heidelberg Canada, the Polar 66 is a pro-
Sunday Presses Higher productivity. Lower costs. New opportunities. Step up to the most productive and agile presses available and open the door to new, more competitive web offset production possibilities.
www.gossinternational.com JUNE 2012 • PRINTACTION • 7
One month from today, printing-sales guru Peter Ebner hosts a lunch-hour Webinar called Drive your Overthe-Counter Print Sales Through the Roof, with topics like three questions you must ask every walk in and how to turn a business-card inquiry into a $1,000 order. $69.95
Beginning at 2:00 EST, SGIA holds a 1-hour Webinar called New Digital Textile Printing Techniques and Applications. Steve Weiss of Dazian Textiles is to focus on how to create never-before-seen effects and end products with large-format printing technologies.
BCPIA hosts its annual golf tournament at the Morgan Creek Golf Club with a 12:30 pm shotgun start. The event includes dinner, green fees, and power cart with GPS yardage locator. $1,060 (foursome)* or $265* (individual)
Printing Industries of America hosts a new 2-day workshop called New Media Boot Camp for Printers, focusing on how to combine print with interactive media. Course topics include using dynamic content on the Web via QR codes, campaign tracking, smartphones and mobile-optimized Websites, and e-publications. $995*
Despite eliminating all of its print categories, entries are due today for the annual Canadian Marketing Association’s awards program. Beyond Digital, PR and Social Media categories, specialized printers can submit into the Customer Management category, focusing on 1:1 and loyalty programs. $550*
Three months from today, under the theme of “Print Integrated,” Graph Expo 2012 begins at McCormick Place in Chicago. The 2012 version of Graph Expo features Marketing and Newspaper Pavilions, as well as specialized events like Executive Outllook, Xplor Seminars and the ING Conference.
Three months from today, SGIA hosts its annual exposition at the Las Vegas Convention Center, which was 92 percent sold out, in terms of exhibitor space, by early June. The 3-day tradeshow features new sections in 2012 like the Photo Imaging Pavilion, Color Management Zone, and colocation with the Printed Electronics & Membrane Switch Symposium.
Canadian Marketing Association hosts a lunch-hour Webinar called 1:1 Marketing across Social Media Channels. Learn key trends in this communications sector, why it is a marketing priority, and hear case studies about it being applied to business goals. $30*
Fox Valley Technical College in Appleton, Wisconsin, hosts the 5-day National Printing Ink Research Institute’s (NPIRI) Summer Course for people involved in the technical and sales side of the ink. Courses include topics like the formulation, testing and application of printing inks, as well as how and why raw materials are used.
AlphaGraphics and Allegra Network team up to host a Joint Technology Expo at the Marriott World Center in Orlando, Florida. Organizers expect the 2-day event to attract more than 150 exhibitors and 600 franchisees from both organizations.
Printing Industries of America hosts a 1-hour Webinar, beginning at 2:00 pm (EST) called Digitally Printed Security Products: New Opportunities for Printers and Suppliers. Discover new security-printing opportunities with documents, labels, and packages, as well as counterfeiting threats and sector challenges. $99*
Pricing listed at standard rates, with * denoting the availability of member of early bird discounts.
Appleton, Wisconsin, is a city heavily involved in the printing business since the mid 1800s. Even today, the city’s third largest employer is a company which shares the same name of Appleton. It shares an area called the Fox Cities with other municipalities that have names also familiar to those in the paper trade: Neenah, Menasha, Little Chute, Kimberly, Combined Locks, and Kaukauna. Appleton is also home to the Paper Discovery Center, a museum focused on papermaking, housed in a former Kimberley-Clark paper mill. 8 • PRINTACTION • JUNE 2012
Crowdfunding Fine Press n late May, a letterpress project to produce a handset, fine press version of Pride and Prejudice made an appeal on the Internet for support. An increasingly popular way to fund independent works, The Bowler Press, helmed by Jarrett Morrison, is one of the first to use this online funding model to gain exposure and support to produce fine print work. Morrison decided to launch a three volume set of Pride and Prejudice, with each page completely handset and letterpress printed. According to Morrison, the project will take a minimum of three years to complete, with the first volume to be finished in 2013, just in time for the 200th-anniversary of the work. (The first edition, three volume set, sold for 18 shillings, equaling approximately $85 in today’s currency, accounting for inflation.) Morrison, along with partner and binding expert Alanna Simenson of Mad Hatter Bookbinding, will produce a total of 138 three-volume copies of Austen’s work: 24 deluxe copies, priced at $3,500 a piece; and 114 numbered copies, priced at $1,500. Each book will be printed on natural white Zerkall mould made paper. The main difference between the two versions is the binding, the deluxe version will feature full leather honey book-calf, tooled in gold leaf and boxed in halfleather clamshell. Morrison and Simenson will hand set each page using type source from Bixler Letterfoundry in Skaneateles, New York. There is enough type for approximately 18 to 24 pages before they must be printed and type reset. The text will be accompanied with original illustrations by Morrison on wood blocks and printed in relief. The book will be printed on a century-old, treadle-driven Chandler and Price press, affectionately named Beryl. While not all supporters of the project can afford the price for even a standard copy, people who donate will be offered perks such as letterpress-printed bookmarks, letters, bookplates and other ephemera, such as Mr. Darcy’s Letter (right).
The letterpress craft While Morrison was previously employed in the graphic arts industry producing trade show graphics, he received a degree in English at the University of Waterloo. Hence his interest in literature and recreating it using traditional methods. Soon after moving to the West Coast, Morrison looked into pursuing a career in letterpress printing. At the time, the training through the Canadian Bookbinders and Book Artists Guild was limited in the West Coast, as many programs were very Ontario-centric. It did, however, lead Morrison into meeting Crispin and Jan Elsted of Barbarian Press. The Mission, British Columbia company took Morrison in during his education on letterpress
10 • PRINTACTION • JUNE 2012
and bookbinding. After spending more time learning the trade, Morrison founded The Bowler Press in 2007. He has since produced a limited 65-copy run of The Importance of Being Earnest, by Oscar Wilde. In addition to the crowd funding, which will mainly go towards the initial materials, Morrison divides the people supporting work like his into three groups: People who are avid collectors with a interest in fine press books; second would be the academic world such as libraries, not just for the literature element, but also to highlight the work of small presses; and finally those who have a special interest in the particular work printed and wish to gift a special edition. Morrison believes letterpress gained popularity in the rise of small business and e-commerce, because there is very little in terms of new letterpress equipment. This has led to a corresponding rise in the prices of old equipment, especially desktop printing machines. Despite the growing challenge of finding equipment, the community ultimately is welcoming of those interested in the craft. “My first experience with bookbinding is that it tends to be a bit more closed: bookbinders are more likely to guard their secrets,” says Morrison. “It probably harkens back to the trade guild days. The letterpress printers I know are aware that their craft is ultimately in peril because the people pass away without passing on the knowledge. This is one of the reasons why everyone is open and encouraging when you have questions or equipment.” When asked about the allure of fine press books, Morrison laughs: “I often joke to other printers that we really can’t afford these books that we produce. The only way we can have these books is to produce them and not to buy them from someone else. They do tend to have a high price tag associated with them.” Morrison is arranging to keep one deluxe copy and two regular copies of Pride and Prejudice, namely for his family. “Books seem to be, particularly trade books, more of a disposable object: they’re consumable. A lot of the paperbacks, I find the construction not very durable. If it’s read a few times, the spine is cracking, starts to separate and the pages start to fall out. It’s not an object that is designed to be treasured. With doing what I do, with these kind of books, people do approach them as a treasured object.” – Clive Chan
From Top: Jarrett Morrison of North Vancouverbased The Bowler Press. Mr. Darcy’s Letter, a piece from the Pride and Prejudice project offered to supporters. A letter from Austen’s Persuasion, an earlier project of Morrison’s.
Esko Building in New Orleans ince being appointed as President of an enormous boost on May 15 after Esko’s EskoArtwork’s North American opera- parent company, Danaher Corp., comtions in October 2008, Mark Quinlan pleted its US$625-million acquisition of has primarily focused on growing the Bel- Michigan-based X-Rite, which owns Pangium company’s sales and service presence tone and dominates colour control for in the Americas. His efforts bore fruit this print production. Esko was purchased by June when more than 500 customers, in- Danaher 15 months earlier in 2011 for cluding 42 Canadians, attended EskoWorld around US$470 million. “We have a parent now in Danaher who 2012 in New Orleans – a 30 percent increase in attendance over last year’s record- is really interested in investing in us and making sure that we have a setting 350 attendees. healthy business and a growThe large increase in ating business,” says Quinlan. tendance was certainly Danaher is a diversified techspurred on by Esko’s user nology company with over conference taking place just four weeks after the quad47,000 associates in 125 rennial drupa tradeshow, countries. It has acquired where the company intromore than 400 companies duced key new technologies since 1984 and generated revlike Esko Suite 12, HD Flexo enues of $16.1 billion in Pixel+, i-cut Automate, 2011. While many technology Kongsberg XN with Multisuppliers in the printing inCUT HP and Inline UV2 for Mark Quinlan, President dustry have been cutting the CDI Spark 4835 Auto of Esko Americas. staffing and R&D, Quinlan imager. EskoWorld itself, however, mostly points out that Esko remains committed to concentrates on software development, as a growing technology budget. “We realize opposed to displaying hardware, which it is the lifeblood of this company.” makes the high 2012 attendance figures Quinlan, after taking on his new post and more significant. analyzing Esko’s North American presence, “We are the leader in software for the concluded he would need 150 salespeople to packaging market by a long shot,” says fully service the United States market, based Quinlan, which makes the company rele- on existing and potential new customers. At vant to all packaging companies, as well as the time, Esko had just 19 salespeople in the a natural starting point for commercial country, who were making only eight perprinters looking to expand into this sector. cent of their sales calls with new customers. Even within its existing base of packaging Today, Esko has over 30 U.S.-based salespeoand converting clients, EskoWorld indi- ple and new-customer calls now measure cated how much progress the company has between 30 and 35 percent. made with developments like WebCenter Esko’s efforts to reach new customers in management software. the Americas includes a renewed concen“So many customers are interested in tration on the commercial printing space. [WebCenter] because it automates a huge In Canada, this includes the hiring of inpiece of their business. It is like going from dustry veterans Marc Raad and Jean-Frandirt roads to paved roads in terms of the cois Lacombe. While Esko enjoys a strong movement of information,” says Quinlan, install base with large Canadian packaging when asked what technology at EskoWorld companies, Raad says he sees more comexcites him most. “There is also a huge need mercial printers in the country being introfor brand owners to use it, in terms of col- duced to Esko through the company’s laboration and getting approvals. It depends Kongsberg cutting-table line. “It is a solid product with a great repuon which brand owner you talk to, but WebCenter can take a couple of weeks out tation,” says Raad. “We have done very well of the development process, which is huge.” with that product line as you see more Esko’s increasing attention of linking places with digital output out there.” Simibrand owners with print providers will lar to the toner-press explosion over the continue to flourish in the packaging past decade, commercial printers are now world, where high-level prepress skills are finding an enormous need to back up their still in great demand. This strategy received wide-format inkjet purchases with produc-
The CDI Spark 4835 Auto, with new Inline UV2 technology, integrates what the company refers to as digital back exposure, automated loading, imaging, digital main exposure and off-loading to the processing unit.
Dozens of Esko users parade toward Bourbon St. for a night of karaoke at the House of Blues.
Emphasizing new 3D visualization tools, Esko Suite 12 launched at drupa with enhancements to WebCenter, Automation Engine, Color Engine, Studio and its flagship editors ArtiosCAD, PackEdge, ArtPro and DeskPack.
Launched at drupa, the format-flexible Kongsberg XN table can be equipped with a more powerful (3 kW) milling spindle, called MultiCUT HP (high power).
At drupa, Esko provided a technology preview of HD Flexo Pixel+ designed to produce both flat-top and round-top dots, which, according to the company, creates an ultimate combination of smooth highlights and gravure-like solid ink densities.
tion-strength finishing. “Coupled with Kongsberg, it really makes a perfect handshake,” adds Raad. Quinlan continues to explain that Esko’s Kongsberg sales in North America have grown by around 40 percent over the last two years, as companies search out new revenue streams. “A lot of commercial printers have had some tough years because their markets have declined and they don’t have tons of cash to outlay,” says Quinlan. “We have all kinds of finance programs, even zero percent financing, to help them make that transition. If somebody wants to buy our products and they are credit worthy, we will find a way to make it work.”
While acknowledging Esko’s large, historical presence in the European market, Quinlan points out that the company now sells more products into the United States than any other country. He also describes a “pent-up” demand in Canada, following an October 2011 roadshow in Toronto that drew over 100 printing professionals. Similar roadshows in major U.S. cities typically draw anywhere from 30 to 50 people. “A few years ago we served Canada from the U.S., but my opinion is that you need feet on the street in the country,” says Quinlan. “Canada is very important to us. We really need to keep adding more resources there and we will.” – Jon Robinson JUNE 2012 • PRINTACTION • 11
Who’s Afraid of Patented Print Solutions? e’ve all seen something great now and again – maybe it’s a really cool direct-mail piece that springs into a 3D cube format when you open it, or it’s something that flips or slides or moves or swings. You study it like a hawk, trying to figure out just how it was made. Then, your mind inevitably goes to that place, and asks that question: “Can I make one of these?” The next obvious question is: “Will I get sued if I knock this off?” The answer is: “maybe.” It all depends upon whether the solution you are looking at is patented or not – but don’t let the big, bad “P-word” scare you away from what could be a great marketing tool for your business. You just need to know what is out there and how to work with, not against, the patent holder.
Proprietary and branded solutions
In the market, there are companies that have developed unique folded solutions and patented or named them. The patented solutions are called “proprietary solutions” and the named solutions are considered “branded solutions.” If the solution is patented, in most cases, you must work with the patent holder to be able to use that fold for your project. To determine if the folding style you are considering is patented, simply look for a patent number on the folded piece to be sure. Branded solutions are innovative, marketed solutions and, if they’re not patented, they’re in the public domain and you can try to reverse engineer the solution. But you cannot adopt the brand name. There are, however, many benefits to working through a patent holder or marketer of a branded solution. Often they have refined the efficiencies of producing the products and can be very competitive from a production and pricing standpoint. Many also offer templates and design services, a skilled team of marketing consultants, and sophisticated technologies to further enhance the product and ROI. A bit about patents
It is important to note that not all patents are the same. There are utility patents that protect the process of creating the piece and design patents that protect the actual design and construction of the piece. Utility patents are very expensive to obtain, but they are tightly
defined, which makes them easier to defend in a courtroom setting. Design patents are cheaper to obtain, but also much easier for people to work around, so they are harder to defend. Patents can also extend to the retail space. For example, many are familiar with the PopOut Map product, which is a well-known Turkish map-style format used to present compact maps of major cities. Their format is patented for retail. The patent number on a printed piece will not identify whether that patent is for the design or the process, so you have to look it up. Patents also expire after a certain point: Design patents expire after 14 years and utility patents after 20 years, while patents issued before 1995 can have
different terms. No smart marketer will send out a press release announcing their patent has expired, so if you really want to know if a patent is still active, a little research is required. There are a few common places to search, including: uspto.gov, google.com/patents, freshpatents.com, and freepatentsonline.com [Canadian patents can be searched at patents.ic.gc.ca]. Most exotic – specialty – folds are not patented, and there is a reason for this. I get lots of emails from people telling me they have a great folded solution they want to protect, and I always tell them to think twice before opening their wallet. If you have something really unique and special and marketable, plus the funds to patent and promote your product, and (perhaps most importantly) you see a strong market opportunity, only then may it be worth patenting. To protect your investment, however, you must be constantly on the offensive, and it is very hard to control and watchdog what is being done around the world. You need people to search for violations of your patent, and you have to be willing to spend the money to go after parties who violate it, and that can get costly. If you’re not willing to go to that extent for your patented solution, then why patent it? Where can I find patented and branded solutions?
There are lots of exciting proprietary and branded solutions on the market today, but you may not find them if you don’t know where to look. Here is just a sampling of some of the patented/branded solutions that are currently on the market:
12 • PRINTACTION • JUNE 2012
THE BOOK-CUBE Status: Exclusive (patented) branded solution structuralgraphics.com The Book-Cube ships flat as a direct-mail piece and, when the envelope is opened, it immediately pops into a 3D cube shape! The Book-Cube is part of the Structural Graphics RocketShip line of products and is available in quick turnaround timeframes. Continued on page 28
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