Web Offset: Still on a Roll?

Craig Faust, president and CEO of HGI Co. in Burlington, WI.

Ralph Pontillo, company president Miami Valley Publishing, of Fairborn, OH.

“However, volume is not increasing,” he adds. “As a result, we find that the ROI must include the retirement of older equipment to cost-justify the new equipment. This level of workload balancing is very difficult.”

Murphy is ecstatic about the technology contained in the new generation Goss Sunday 2000 with Autoplate and Auto Transfer—technologies he believes will “revolutionize the industry.” The Autoplate has enabled dramatic improvements in makeready and changeover times, while Auto Transfer has kept Japs-Olson competitive on bids for work with multiple versions or changes within the run.

Murphy, for one, is bullish on the future of web offset and its collaborative opportunities with other printing disciplines. “The future growth of web offset will come in conjunction with the new inkjet technology,” he says. “I see there being a migration towards a hybrid printing press that includes offset, inkjet and in-line finishing.”

It’s not enough to offer quality work, fast turnarounds, low prices and excellent service. Today’s printer needs to be multi-processed to enable them to use the best technology, or combination, available for each job, points out Craig Faust, president and CEO of HGI Co. in Burlington, WI.

“With run lengths getting shorter, you have more versions, which can be more complicated,” he says. “Lead times are getting shorter because customers don’t have the staff they had before, so you need to integrate and partner with them even further.”

The most effective print partner won’t be the one who automatically pushes jobs toward a certain platform, he notes. Choosing the right manufacturing process maximizes value to the client.

“Systems integrations are extremely important,” Faust says. “Automate where you can, and run as lean as you can. It’s not about working harder, it’s working smarter. Of course, that is easier said than done.”

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