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Haapanen/Burkett Inc. — Raising the Quality Bar

March 2008
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THE STAFF at Haapanen/Burkett Inc. believes that being a successful, full-service commercial printer begins with an unwavering commitment to customer service, along with offering a wide variety of production capabilities to its largely pharmaceutical industry client base. Founded by Jerry Haapanen and Joe Burkett in 1984, the Gurnee, IL-based company came to fruition when the two typesetting business owners realized the advantages of merging their experience and expertise into a partnership.

Built on the premise of being a one-stop shop, Haapanen/Burkett cultivated a strong business base by serving the typesetting needs of small, local printers by preparing camera-ready art. The company quickly developed a reputation for providing excellent service. This dedication to service progressed the business from typesetting into electronic prepress and, within a few years, Haapanen/Burkett evolved into a flourishing enterprise.

With a significant segment of work dedicated to specialized projects requiring handwork, a key component of the company’s success has been its gamut capabilities.

By 1997, it had grown to the point that the partners decided to invest in their first Heidelberg press—a five-color MO, which quickly became the company’s flagship machine. A stepping stone to Haapanen/Burkett’s progression toward larger presses, the MO paved the way for the purchase of a new Heidelberg Speedmaster CD 74 with coater.

Soon after, the partners realized the need to move into the 40˝ market, so they invested in a six-color Speedmaster XL 105 with coater. The XL 105’s remarkable speed capabilities enabled Haapanen/Burkett to keep up with the demand of its customers, but also created a few new issues.

“The XL 105 presented us with some big challenges due to its exceptionally fast performance,” says Haapanen, vice president. “We experienced some issues with misting and ink/water balance, and had difficulties getting the first sheet of the run to look like the last. When our press operator escalated or decreased the speed of the press for any reason, keeping the color consistent was often a challenge.”

The need to upgrade the company’s ink to one that had the ability to hold color, regardless of press speeds, was clear. Haapanen/Burkett experimented with several inks in the hopes of finding one that would suit its needs.

After many trial-and-error experiences testing several competitive inks, Haapanen/Burkett’s supplier, Fujifilm Graphic Systems, introduced the company to Van Son ink. A longstanding partner of the ink manufacturer, Fujifilm was confident the ink would outperform every other product they tried.


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