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Top 30 Book Manufacturers

September 2002
Keeping in line with the supersizing trend, BookTech—The Magazine's list of the top 25 book manufacturers has been expanded to include the 30 highest grossing book printers in the United States and Canada. The decision to add to the list was to offer a more expansive look at those manufacturers at the top of their field. The types of products offered by the various companies run the gamut from fine editions to best-selling paperbacks to trade publications to textbooks to yearbooks. More detailed information about each printer follows the list in the form of brief synopses.

In addition to expanding the list, there have been other changes, as well, including Quebecor World edging R.R. Donnelley in the race for the top spot. Along with Quebecor World and R.R. Donnelley, most of the usual suspects make an appearance on the list, with slight shifts throughout. Banta moved up to the third position this year from fourth in 2001, trading places with Von Hoffmann. Courier and Bertelsmann Arvato swapped the sixth and fifth spots, respectively.

The list was based on information provided to PI from the manufacturers, which was then updated recently by our sister publication, BookTech—The Magazine.

1) The leading North American book printer, Quebecor World is the largest commercial printer and image-management company in the world. The company prints more than one billion books a year.

2) R.R. Donnelley & Sons' book operations provide a full range of services to meet customers' requirements. With five manufacturing facilities in the eastern and midwestern United States, and Mexico, R.R. Donnelley provides the following services: hardcover and softcover book manufacturing, web offset, sheetfed offset and digital print technology; conventional and digital prepress operations, including composition and page makeup; custom publishing and on-demand printing; packaging design and assembly; and digital conversion into Web-ready formats.

3) Banta Corp. offers softcover book products and value-added packaging and fulfillment services for educational and general book publishers. Its clients include those companies in the educational, trade, professional, religious, healthcare and financial markets. The company offers electronic design and composition, page layout, proofing and image services, and CD-ROMs, diskettes and cassette tapes.

4) Von Hoffmann is an ISO 9002-certified, full-service book printer with nine manufacturing facilities in the U.S. The company offers design, composition, and digital and conventional prepress services. It also offers project management services from concept and design through printing and distribution. Von Hoffmann's capabilities include small-, medium- and long-run book production; perfect- and case-binding; saddle-stitching; and book production with bound-in CD-ROMs. Other services include computer-to-plate (CTP), FTP and WAM!NET, along with warehousing, kitting and distribution for single-source needs.

5) Courier Corp. produces over 300 million one- to four-color hardcover and softcover books a year in six plants. Clients include large and small publishers in the education, religious, specialty trade, medical and reference markets. Courier also provides a full complement of digital prepress services, including CTP. It recently acquired Dover Publications, a New York-based publisher of special interest books, for $39 million.

6) Bertelsmann Arvato is an international provider of tailor-made printing services, including digital prepress, print-on-demand and CTP. The Bertelsmann AG-owned company lists advertising agencies and book and magazine publishing houses among its clients.

7) Phoenix Color serves the needs of the book publishing industry through three divisions—Book Component, Thin Book and Book Technology Park. The Book Component division operates 20 conventional offset presses. The Thin Book division manufactures multicolor, flatback softcover and multi-color hardcover books. Book Technology Park is a digital environment that produces conventional offset one- and two-color softcover and hardcover books and print-on-demand services.

8) Transcontinental Printing has the unique ability to offer publishers a complete range of hard and softcover book printing and finishing services, for both short and long runs. The printer services publishers in a wide variety of segments such as trade, education, religious, travel, maps and atlases throughout North America. The Book Group can also handle customized versions of a single publication and any digital printing needs.

9) Hess Management is the parent company of D.B. Hess, The Press of Ohio and Danner Press. D.B. Hess is a leading printer of 81⁄2x11˝ softcover publications, including educational materials, catalogs and commercial softcover products. It bills itself as a full-service print partner offering conventional and digital prepress operations; one- to five-color printing; sheetfed cover printing; coating and finishing; perfect and saddle-stitch bindery services; multi-component assembly and manufacturing; streamlined distribution; and mailing and warehousing.

10) Webcrafters is a four-color printer with large format direct-to-plate capability. Its clients include the McGraw-Hill Companies, Educational Testing Service, Harcourt and Pearson Education. Webcrafters is fully equipped with digital prepress CTP systems that manage and prepare files for direct-to-plate output. Specialties include, four-color, trade and educational books.

11) Walsworth Publishing is a family owned commercial printing company that produces yearbooks, textbooks and other specialty publications. The company offers a Direct2Film CTP system and Komori presses for high-end print jobs.

12) Maple-Vail Book Mfg. is a full-service book manufacturer offering prepress services that include electronic or conventional imposition; digital scanning and proofing on offset presses (sheetfed and web); one- and two-color printing; smyth-sewn, fiberbound, casebound and papercover binding; pick and pack, automated cartoning and drop shipping; and real-time Web links to job statuses and internal file transfer.

13) Edwards Brothers is a full-service book and journal manufacturer with operations in Michigan, North Carolina and Kansas. The company specializes in ultra-short and medium runs of high-quality publications for book publishers, educational organizations and scholarly societies. Edwards offers prepress services, binding, and a wide range of paper and cover stocks.

14) The Sheridan Group comprises five printing companies that target the journal, magazine, catalog and book markets. It also offers a full range of printing and publishing services to associations, publishers and university presses. The merger of Sheridan Group holdings, Braun-Brumfield and Bookcrafters spawned Sheridan Books, a producer of hardcover and paperback books in various sizes and bindings in print runs of 250 to 100,000.

15) Friesens manufactures approximately 20 million books a year, including trade books, art books, educational books, cookbooks, children's books and calendars. Its trade division comprises the largest segment of the company.

16) Worzalla Publishing is an employee-owned book manufacturing company founded in 1892. The company's capabilities include electronic prepress; large-format sheetfed and web presses for medium- to long-runs; and complete hardcase and softcover bindery services at its 300,000-square-foot facility.

17) McNaughton Lithograph/Command Web was founded in 1971 by the principals of McNaughton Lithograph. The company produces annual reports, catalogs, directories, college bulletins and softcover books.

18) Malloy Lithographing is a complete book manufacturing company that provides electronic prepress (including CTP); web and sheetfed printing; multicolor covers, dust jackets and inserts; precision spot gloss; and a wide range of binding styles, including perfect, saddle, case and lay flat. Print runs range from 500 to 50,000 for one-color, and 500 to 3,000 for two-color in standard trim sizes.

19) Journal Communications is an employee-owned, diversified media and communications company that publishes newspapers, niche products and operates web printing plants. Its subsidiaries include Add Inc., a short- to medium-run printer, and IPC Communications, a company specializing in printing, managing data and mastering and replicating CD-ROMs. Add Inc. owns and operates 110 publications and eight printing plants in eight states.

20) Toppan Printing Co. of America offers prepress, printing, binding, fulfillment, warehousing and distribution services from a 210,000-square-foot facility in Somerset, NJ. Part of Toppan Printing Co. of Japan, the ISO 9002 company has evolved into one of the New York area's largest printers. The full-service company produces books, catalogs, annual reports, and corporate and sales materials.

21) McNaughton & Gunn specializes in short to medium runs with standard trim sizes in sheetfed and heatset web printing. The company offers its customers a variety of binding styles, including perfect- and case-bound. McNaughton & Gunn publishes over 6,000 titles a year from its headquarters in Saline, MI.

22) Thomson-Shore, based in Dexter, MI, specializes in short- to medium-runs of 200 to 10,000 copies. University presses comprise about one third of its customers.

23) Dickinson Press specializes in trade hardcover and soft-cover books, Bibles, New Testaments, dictionaries, compact or mini-books and educational workbooks. The company uses electronic prepress equipment, heatset web presses and multi-color sheetfed presses. Bindery solutions include perfect and saddlestitch, and its capabilities include round cornering, drilling, foil stamping, embossing and diecutting.

24) Part of the Linick Group of Companies, L.K. Litho specializes in complete book production, graphic and creative services, copy, design, type, and layout for an assortment of printed materials. The company also provides an array of other services, including concept through camera-ready copy, book, jacket and poster design, cartoons, illustrations and spot drawings.

25) Versa Press produces soft and hardcover books in short and medium print runs. Versa offers comprehensive manufacturing capabilities, beginning with its own patented prepress system and continuing through binding.

26) Webcom Limited is a full-service book manufacturer, offering customers web offset printing for book production, computer- controlled cameras for automated prepress and Otabind, a lay flat alternative to perfect binding. The Toronto-based company recently launched Digital Print Technologies, which offers in-house manufacturing capabilities through short runs.

27) Managed by third- and fourth-generations of the family, The C.J. Krehbiel Co. delivers printed products in-house—prepress to printing to bindery—from a 200,000-square-foot facility outside Cincinnati.

28) Solisco Printers, based in Scott, QC, offers a range of printed matter in short, medium and long runs from prepress to delivery. The company produces books, magazines, brochures, text books and educational materials.

29) In business since 1983, Baltimore-based Victor Graphics is a full-service book manufacturer with complete prepress and bindery services.

30) Operating out of a 100,000 square-foot facility in Claysburg, PA, NPC Inc. offers an array of offset and digital printing options for publishers. Services include print-on-demand, as well as fulfillment and distribution.


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