Graph Expo--A Show of Shows
Varis, now in cooperative agreements with Xeikon, and variable data software specialties from Agfa's Chromapress camp and digital press providers IBM, Indigo, Xerox and Xeikon, were also highly impressive.
At the Indigo camp, the new UltraStream digital offset color press and e-Print Pro, a low-cost digital press designed as an entry-level product for prospective on-demand printers, were premier launches.
Regarding cooperative announcements, Prograph—which launched nine new products, unbundling a number of production planning tools—entered into a strategic business alliance with electronic job ticketing specialist, Programmed Solutions.
Under specific terms of the Prograph/Programmed agreement, Programmed Solutions will market and sell Prograph Production Systems' products, known by the brand name Elysium Systems, to general commercial printers with sales of less than $30 million.
Prograph will build a bi-directional interface to Programmed Solutions' Printing Management System to download information about equipment, labor, materials and other job specifications to Prograph's shop-floor data-collection system.
After receiving this information and while running the job, Elysium Systems will send cost data to the Programmed Solutions Printing Management System, providing customers with real-time job information, including a log of waste amounts and causes.
In other areas, Portalis made its U.S. debut, announcing it had signed agreements with PrimeSource and Pitman to distribute PressPort throughout the United States.
Next year, GRAPH EXPO 99 and CONVERTING EXPO 99 will be held October 17 to 20, moving to the South Hall of Chicago's McCormick Place.
Word has it that nearly 80 percent of all available floor space for the 1999 show is already sold to major players in prepress, press and postpress.