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Heidelberg Expands Consumables Business in Germany

January 15, 2009
HEIDELBERG, GERMANY—01/15/2009—Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG (Heidelberg) is expanding the range of printing plates, inks, coatings and print additives it offers customers in Germany by acquiring the ink specialist Ulrich Schweizer GmbH/IPS GmbH (Schweizer), based in Waiblingen.

Schweizer has been supplying the industry with sheetfed offset consumables for over 35 years and is one of Germany’s biggest service providers for Pantone and spot colors. The company boasts a state-of-the-art ink-mixing plant and also offers a 24-hour delivery service.

"The acquisition of Schweizer is a further boost to our strategy of continuous expansion in the consumables business at Heidelberg," explains Peter Tix, Head of the Consumables division at Heidelberg. “In addition to high-quality machines, our customers also expect highly skilled application support on site. Our carefully tested solutions ensure optimum interplay between prepress, press, software and consumables." 

At drupa in May 2008, Heidelberg pooled all its consumables under the Saphira brand. Saphira consumables deliver smooth and reliable production that raises productivity levels and cuts downtimes. The company offers packages known as Saphira Performance Kits, which contain consumables that have been carefully selected to deliver optimum results when used together in its machines.  

As a result of the acquisition, Ulrich Schweizer GmbH has been renamed Saphira Handelsgesellschaft mbH.

The new company is based in Waiblingen, and Dr. Uwe Lemcke and Kai-Erik Ströbel have been appointed as Managing Directors.

Kai-Erik Ströbel comments on the acquisition: "The success of Schweizer is based on an unyielding customer focus, outstanding service, and decades of experience and know-how in the production and application of inks. What’s more, we have established a reputation as one of the leading service providers for sheetfed offset inks in the German state of Baden-Württemberg. By working with Heidelberg and its sales and service organization, we can now offer our portfolio throughout Germany and expand our range of specialist products and services even further."

The number of products available online is also to be increased. Thanks to the online shop at, customers can order their own specific inks from a selection of over 24,000 Pantone inks at any time, day or night. Tones can also be fine-tuned to specific printing stocks and the relevant data stored online in a customer database.

Both parties have agreed not to disclose the conditions of the acquisition.

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