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June 2006

Dutch German company Drent Goebel will demonstrate a seven-color, 33.5˝ VSOP web press during an open house at its newly acquired North American facility in Montreal from June 22-27. The variable sleeve offset press is equipped with a downstream coater and an EB curing unit. Visitors can attend workshops on quality, cost savings and environmental issues.

EFI has acquired a prepress workflow intelligence platform called OpForma. This toolset, developed by Prolatus Inc., provides detailed, Web-based analysis of prepress production activities for strategic planning, costing and real-time decision making.

Secap named Progressive Office Systems of Orlando, FL, as “U.S. Dealer of the Year” for 2005. Eugene Prestera and John Prestera are the two principals of Progressive Office Systems, which has been a Secap dealer since 1997.

Bob Barton has been named commercial operations director for Sitma U.S.A. He replaces Pete Butikis who recently resigned.

KBA Holds Open House in Germany

RADEBEUL, GERMANY—In what has become an annual rite of spring, KBA hosted more than 60 guests from North American printing firms to a tour of its manufacturing facility here as well as visits to key German customers during its open house event in May.

While touring the manufacturing facility, which produces sheetfed presses, KBA officials reported $2 billion in worldwide sales in 2005 including 817 sheetfed presses. Visitors were able to watch as 10 presses slated to be shipped to American customers were custom built, along with numerous other machines headed for international destinations.

Some of the American companies that were having KBA presses built included Ivy Hill, Jostins, Bolger Concept to Print and RR Donnelley. KBA also ran test jobs on a Rapida 105 5/5 and Rapida 142 6+L in the company’s demo center.

Just a stone’s throw from the KBA factory is Ellerhold Printing, a package and poster printer that was the inspiration for the 81˝ press model. In fact, Ellerhold installed the first-ever 81˝ Rapida 205—a four-color machine with coater—in 2005.

North American visitors watched several quick plate changes on the press as poster jobs, which make up 90 percent of the company’s work, were completed.

The following day, the group converged upon Druckhaus Mitte, a package and commercial printer located just outside Berlin. Inside, a five-color, 64˝ Rapida 162 stood ready to accept digital data for jobs sent from its facility in Berlin. Druckhaus Mitte produces point-of-purchase displays for its sister company located next door as well as books and other commercial work.

During another site visit, a Dresden-area Web-to-print firm opened its doors to the American group, allowing them access to the all-KBA plant. Jobs produced here are acquired via the Internet—the company has no sales staff—and boasts sales of US$35 million. The company runs a complete digital workflow with 180 employees working three shifts per day, producing jobs for 400 customers and shipping 1,000 packages on a daily basis.

Some other interesting facts about this Web-to-print facility: the company does its software development in-house; employees wear all white uniforms and receive a fruit basket each morning; and the company has on-site massage and physical therapy available.

Other highlights of the trip included guided tours of the historic cities of Dresden and Berlin, traditional German dining, and the event was capped off with a sunset cruise on the paddle-steamer “Stadt Wehlen” along the River Elbe.


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