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How Does Your Bindery Grow?

March 2000
BY CHERYL A. ADAMS


Printer, printer . . . How does your bindery grow? Certainly not with cockleshells all in a row—but with the same careful cultivation, operational dedication and savvy business sense that commercial printers are using to grow their prepress and pressroom areas.

But forget all the bells and whistles of prepress and press for a moment. Instead, take a behind-the-scenes look at how three very different commercial printers—two with extensive bindery operations and one with limited finishing services—are growing their overall businesses by investing in their back ends.

Blue Ocean Press
Absolute Automation
You never want to have to print a job over again, cautions Tom Mounce, president and owner of Ft. Lauderdale, FL-based Blue Ocean Press. "Sometimes it could mean the profits from the next five jobs are lost because you blew one job. All the prepress and press work ruined at the cost of a bindery-botched job. With quality equipment in the bindery, there's a much better chance of doing it right the first time."

And considering that his commercial sheetfed business specializes in high-end agency work, where back-end mistakes can be extremely costly, Mounce is growing his full-service bindery by investing in automated equipment. For example, to enhance the efficiency and productivity of his cutting capabilities, he recently purchased a pair of Polar cutters (both feature Autotrim) and a jogger with air removal and scale.

"You can't have the latest equipment in prepress and the pressroom without keeping up with technology in the bindery," he explains. "With automation, you produce more work using fewer people. Plus, you get more production out of a machine because it's automated."

Mounce has equipped his fully automated bindery with three Stahl folders (one with a PAF bundler), a Rollem perfing and scoring machine, a Muller Martini saddle stitcher, a Vacuumatic counter and a Clamco shrinkwrapper. He says cultivating a modern, automated bindery is important for many reasons. First, there's the all-important aspect of ensuring quality—and quality control (QC)—throughout the entire process, especially in the bindery where quality and QC can be compromised if a job is outsourced.

"As a high-end printer, I have to stand by my work—from design to delivery," says Mounce. "In order to do that, I must be able to control the entire process, from start to finish. I don't outsource much work. I do as much as I can in-house, so I can control the workflow and the quality."


 

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