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SUPPLIER news

May 2007
MAN Roland Hosts Printers for Press Premier

OFFENBACH, GERMANY—The world premier of a “next generation” sheetfed printing platform isn’t an everyday occurrence, so MAN Roland extended its recent festivities to more than a week to allow for bringing in several groups of select printers, journalists and its own employees from around the globe. The stars of the show were HiPrint and DirectDrive versions of the new Roland 700 sheetfed printing platform.

To make the most of the trip, the contingent from North America was additionally treated to tours of a local DirectDrive beta site, MAN Roland’s foundry and its manufacturing/assembly facilities for sheetfed presses.

The new Roland 700 HiPrint (high quality) is being positioned as a mainstream choice for value-added printing applications, while the more technologically sophisticated DirectDrive is targeted to shops that fit a specific profile with regard to short-run work. Both are 41˝ machines.

What’s distinctive about the DirectDrive is the use of individual, computer-controlled servo motors to power the plate cylinders in each printing unit. This enables up to three operations to be performed simultaneously—such as changing plates while washing the blankets and impression cylinders or inking up the press—for faster makeready. The net effect of the productivity gains possible with this press is said to be up to a 60 percent reduction in makeready time, enabling one to two more jobs to be produced per shift.

DirectDrive models can carry a 20- to 30-percent price premium, depending on the base 700 model used for comparison. Therefore, MAN Roland sees the technology being a good fit for shops that print more than 10 jobs per shift—with average run lengths below 5,000 sheets—particularly if they are interested in a long perfector configuration.

A select bundle of QuickChange modules, Automatic Plate Loading (APL) and perfecting are standard equipment on DirectDrive (options for HiPrint) models. The press units are said to be new from the side frame up, and are sandwiched between a new sheet feeder and AirGlide delivery. Both 700 versions provide the capability to deactivate units when not in use.

According to MAN Roland, HiPrint models are optimized for high-quality printing applications and the use of in-line operations that add value to sheets—such as embossing, cold foil transfer and UV coating. The press in the demonstration area had an in-line double foiler to showcase the possibilities in printing ink on top of foil, which the press manufacturer believes will be a fast growing application.

Founded as the University of Mainz’s printing plant, the now-independent Verlag Hermann Schmidt Mainz publishing and printing company was a beta site for a six-color Roland 700 DirectDrive press with coater.

Bertram Schmidt-Friderichs, general manager, says the fast makeready capability of the press has enabled the printer to sell new printing applications. He cited the example of a customer that sells through dealers who now can order catalogs that are customized or “regionalized” in runs of 500 to 1,000 copies. The inside pages are printed in a longer run, and the cover form changed in short runs, to include the local representative’s logo and company information.

The ability to do plate changes in four to five minutes instead of 20 minutes and get good color on the first pull enables the shop to offer this service with “interesting pricing,” noted Schmidt-Friderichs. He added that the company did have to get its workflow “right,” with better communication and organization to ensure plates are available when needed.

Performing operations, such as press washing and plate changing, simultaneously is a key advantage, reported the company exec. Because of the shop’s focus on delivering superior quality, he also highlighted the ability of plate cylinders to be turned faster or slower, in very small increments, to quickly compensate for variations in sheet register over longer runs.

Touring a foundry is an intense sensory experience: air permeated with sulfur, the eerie orange glow of molten metal, showers of sparks that look like mini-fireworks shows and, all along the walkways, one can feel intense heat radiating off side frames and other parts left to cool. To be a good neighbor, MAN Roland said it has implemented a cleaner smelting process in the foundry, since its entire business complex is in a residential area.

The surrounding manufacturing and assembly facilities provide a stark contrast, as they are filled with computer-driven machinery, AGVs (automated guided vehicles) buzzing around and comfortably attired workers. Some of the steps MAN Roland reported employing to improve manufacturing precision include measuring parts in a special temperature-controlled room, machining parts in pairs to ensure tight tolerances between A and B sides of a press, and assembling units on granite bases for stability to ensure proper placement and alignment of bearings.



John Hogan has become a principal of AE Solutions, which provides variable data solutions to the mailing industry.

Amgraf Inc. has been issued U.S. Patent No. 7,196,822 for its LogoDot security document technology, which enables any image to be converted into a custom halftone dot for use in printing to make copies easily detectable.

MailExpress has introduced a money-back guarantee for expedited mail services from its origination facility. The company is promising delivery in five days, or it will reimburse mailers up to four times the cost of postage for flat mail and two times the cost of postage for parcels.

Web Press Corp. (WPC) has appointed Mark J. Ricca as president and CEO of the company and its international sales subsidiary, Web Leader International. In addition, Rick Guinn has been named vice president of operations.

Printable Technologies has appointed Josh Roach to the newly created position of executive vice president of technology. Ralph E. Williams has been named to the position of enterprise sales executive.

Stora Enso has made numerous appointments to the merchant sales team within its North American marketing and sales organization. The roster includes Tami Fries, regional manager, mid-America; Christophe Kusel, regional manager, Northeast; Karen Ehman, national accounts manager; Bill Fleming, senior account manager, Northeast; Ryan Hawthorne, account manager, West; Stacey Rimassa, creative sales specialist, Northeast; and Paige Rosenberger, creative sales specialist, South Central.

The UV systems business of Nordson Corp. has earned the ISO 14001:2004 and 9001:2000 certifications for environmental and quality management.

Matik North America, the exclusive distributor for Edelmann Graphics GmbH, is introducing the manufacturer’s latest generation of narrow web presses to the North American market. Chris Davis, an Edelmann equipment specialist, has relocated from the U.K. to support this effort.

NELA has acquired the Stoesser register punch and bender product line from Olec Corp. This addition complements the company’s Ternes products for sheetfed printers.

Joe Notta has been named Colter & Peterson’s representative for the metropolitan New York region. His territory includes the greater Tri-State area of New Jersey, New York City and southern Connecticut, as well as the Eastern Pennsylvania, Philadelphia and Baltimore markets.

Flint Group has relocated its offices as a result of corporate staff reductions and decentralization of its research and development activities, following the merger of Flint Ink with XSYS Print Solutions. The organization’s North American administrative offices are now located in Plymouth, MI, and laboratories in Ypsilanti, MI.

xpedx has relocated from Columbus into a new distribution/logistics center and offices in Grove City, OH. The company reports doubling its space to 68,000 square feet, but tripling its warehouse capacity with a more efficient internal design.

Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG recently marked two related manufacturing milestones. It produced press cylinder No. 1 million at its foundry in Amstetten, Germany, which supplies the company’s press assembly plant in Wiesloch-Walldorf. That facility just turned out its 25,000 printing unit.

In honor of its former chairman emeritus, Baldwin Technology has funded 10 new Harold W. Gegenheimer Memorial Scholarships through the Print and Graphics Scholarship Foundation (PGSF). This raises the total number of PGSF scholarships associated with Baldwin to 28.

Sappi Fine Paper North America’s sheeting facility in Allentown, PA, has been certified to the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) chain-of-custody standard, joining its certified mills in Cloquet, MN, and Muskegon, MI. In addition, its entire brand line is certified to the Sustainable Forestry Initiative 2005-2009 edition.

After 25 years as a field technical representative for Gans Ink & Supply, Lou Gennarelli has retired from the company. Taking his place is Rodrigo Sandoval, who previously was an inside technical representative for more than 10 years.

To better serve its customers and distributors, Mohawk Fine Papers has divided the United States market into Eastern and Western regions with a new level of sales management. Lee Battin has been promoted to national sales manager, Western U.S., and will lead the South Central and Western regions. In addition, Joy Evans has been named regional sales manager, Western U.S., Christy Barton has been hired as district sales manager for Southern California, and Carole Ott has joined Mohawk as business development manager, Western region.

Paul Biesiadecki has been promoted to national sales manager, Eastern U.S., and will lead the sales teams for the New England, Midwest, Mid-Atlantic and Southeast regions. Greg Schoudt has been named regional sales manager, Southeast U.S., covering Florida, Georgia, the Carolinas, Tennessee, Arkansas and Louisiana, while Robert Ferragina is now district sales manager, Northeast region.

Also, Richard Schielke has joined Mohawk in the newly created role of national printer business development manager, focusing on the commercial printer and corporate end-user markets.

Roy Kropman has been appointed president of Buskro Ltd., taking over from Richard Hamilton. Kropman will remain in charge of new product development.

Standard Finishing Systems has added four industry veterans as field sales managers, including Peter Coccorese, Northeast region; Bruce Beiderman, Mid-Atlantic region; Steve Martinez, South/Central region; and Jim Wynigear, Southwest region.

To help educate mailers on the intelligent barcode technology introduced last year by the U.S. Postal Service, Trackmymail.com has published a white paper titled “The Era of Intelligent Mail: A New Barcode Transforms an Industry.” Called the 4-State (or One Code) Barcode, the basics of this new capability were explained in an earlier white paper—“Intelligent Mail, 4-State Barcodes, One Code Vision and Confirm”—also written by Dave Lewis, company president. Both are available on Trackmymail.com’s Website.

Continuing to build its ink-jet business, Agfa Graphics has created a dedicated sales and service organization in North America that is being led by Julian Robledo, newly appointed general manager, Ink-jet Solutions, North America. Kristof Dekeukelaere has been named director, Ink-jet Services, North America. The company also announced that Advantage Sign Supply, a distributor of large-format printing solutions, has become a distributor of its Anapurna ink-jet printers in the East Coast and Midwest regions.

Willie Fuchs, long-time owner and president of Fuchs-Devries, has accepted the position of national sales manager at Grafix, a maker of drying systems.

Gavin Jordan-Smith, a former director and corporate officer at Toppan Printing Co. America, has been named vice president of marketing, commercial print and prepress segments, Worldwide Graphic Communications Industry Business, Xerox Corp.

Vanguard Graphics International (VGI) has acquired Xitron Inc., a developer of RIPs, RIP management software and related workflow solutions.

The Bennett Group, a mailing training and consulting firm, has introduced a new “Barcode to Bottomline” training program covering five certificates. Subject areas include: “Developing a Postal Point of View,” “Designing for Postage Savings,” “Mailing List/Data Maintenance,” “Presort/Preparation/Presentation to USPS” and “Strategic Planning for Mail.” For more information, visit www.the-bennett-group.com.

Pantone Inc. has appointed Brian Rooney as chief technology officer, charged with identifying growth opportunities, expanding existing product lines and developing new technologies.

Dr. Charles Krouse has been named the recipient of the 2006 Robert F. Reed Technology Medal by the Ben Franklin Society. He was recognized for being a pioneer in offset press and process research, including development of the Sunday gapless press technology now offered by Goss International.

KBA North America has appointed Jerry S. Manzi to the position of vice president for the Central region of the country, and named Marcus Schoen as West Coast district sales manager serving Southern California and as far east as Las Vegas.

Web-to-print applications, culminating with production on a Lithrone S40 Super Perfector sheetfed press, were the focus of an event recently hosted by Komori America at its headquarters in Rolling Meadows, IL. Approximately 100 printers and guests were treated to expert presentations and hands-on demonstrations, with software vendors EFI, Pageflex, Press-Sense and XMPie presenting their Web-to-print solutions. In other company news, Alex Wekerle was promoted to regional service manager for the Central East and West regions. Komori has also assumed sales and service responsibility for the territory previously covered by Atlantic Graphic Systems of Columbia, MD.

Working through one of its merchants, Strategic Paper Group, Stora Enso will now be supplying fashion retailer Nordstrom with catalog papers containing 30 percent post-consumer waste (PCW) and chain-of-custody certified by the Forest Stewardship Council.

MAN Roland CEO Vince Lapinski was a featured panelist at the Second Annual Economic Forum presented by the German American Chamber of Commerce. This panel of top executives shared their experiences in operating transatlantic businesses and the challenges they face.

Rena Systems has become the exclusive North American distributor of Astro Machine’s tabletop ink-jet addressing equipment. It will also distribute Astro’s line of tabletop tabbing, labeling and console ink-jet equipment.

Pitney Bowes has established a new executive leadership structure with the appointment of Murray D. Martin as CEO, who will also continue to serve in his present position as president. Additionally, Martin has joined the company’s board of directors. Michael J. Critelli, previously chairman and CEO, will assume the newly created position of executive chairman. PI
 

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