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Carlson Print Gains Market Edge with manroland Foiler

April 2009
MINNEAPOLIS—04/01/09—Carlson Print Group (CPG) is letting everyone know what it thinks of its new Roland 706 Hi-Print UV press with In-line Foiler Prindor. The digital and offset printer, a division of American Spirit Graphics Corp. (ASGC), was quick to pick up business soon after promoting its new addition on its web site. Installed in December 2008, the 40-inch, 6-color press presents an extra shot of competitive marketplace thinking to CPG’s overall strategy.

“We wanted to upgrade our technology, add UV capability and find a way to differentiate ourselves in the marketplace,” said Darren Carlson, CEO of ASGC and its three divisions, including CPG. “The upgrade in technology was a driving force with quicker make-readies and improved color, and so was getting into the UV market. Almost everybody has UV but very few printers have foil like this press. The Roland 706 can print on top of foil, in any color, and you can do it in-line as part of one process.”

Carlson said CPG outlined a strategy for a broad range of regional and national clientele, including retail, packaging and general commercial print customers. “In retail, it is all about catching a consumer’s eye. Packaging designers want their package to stand out and say ‘look at me’. We can give them new ways to make it happen with our foiling press.”

The Roland 706’s ability to automatically adjust for substrates ranging from 0.04 mm thin paper to 1 mm cardboard, meshes well with CPG’s clientele, too. Carlson said they had already uncovered plenty of other competitive advantages before “the foil strategy” crystallized.

First manroland for 20-year shop
CPG has prospered since it began as a small operation in the warehouse district of Minneapolis 20 years ago. A full service operation, it now employs 60 people and generated revenue of $16 million in 2008. Based on its success and new strategy, the search for a new press began last spring with General Manager Rod Franson, Sales Manager Don Gossen, and Plant Manager Doug Mohagen, spearheading the effort. With Heidelberg and Mitsubishi presses already on the floor, manroland was one of several manufacturers they contacted for consideration.

At Graph Expo last October, manroland was the established front-runner based on what CPG learned about advanced systems such as ColorPilot™ automated inking, automatic plate loading (APL), and System Brunner PrintConsult and okBalance® control. During the show, Franson, Gossen and Mohagen saw the press run at manroland’s Print Technology Center in Westmont, IL. Jason Carlson, Darren’s brother, who is ASGC’s VP – Strategic Initiatives, rounded out the team by evaluating the regional and national market potential for the output of the press from a packaging buyers’ perspective.
 

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