Allied Printing to Support Growth with New KBA Rapida 106 Eight-Color Press
DALLAS—Sept. 26, 2012—KBA North America announces that Allied Printing Services, a full service commercial/financial printing firm located in Manchester, CT, has purchased a new 41" KBA Rapida 106 eight-color press. Having seen the press model in action at drupa 2012 and put it through rigorous testing, Allied will take delivery of one in November.
“Even during this challenging environment, Allied continues to grow aggressively by adding new customers and more employees,” says John Sommers Jr, president of Allied Printing Services, which operates out of a 285,000-sq.ft. facility. “We believe strongly in consistently reinvesting in our company and maintaining the most up-to-date equipment on our floor.
“We felt that the new KBA Rapida 106 gave us the automation and productivity to continue our healthy growth and further enhance our product offerings and capabilities. We’re not replacing an older press; we’re adding capacity with the addition of this new press,” Sommers adds.
He also noted additional key reasons that his firm chose the new KBA press. These include the ability to print on a wide range of substrates, from 40-lb text to 48-pt. board; inline automated systems, such as color control, automatic register and auto plate changing; and the direct pro-environmental impact that the press will make.
“Having the ability to run a wide spectrum of substrates was critical for us,” says Sommers. “On a typical day at Allied, we can be printing financial work on lightweight offset and then need to quickly changeover to point-of-purchase and packaging work on thick board. Our new Rapida 106 will allow us to do so with ease.
“Another one of our main differentiators from our competitors is our ability to deliver fast turnarounds. Our customers’ time-lines are shrinking and we don’t shy away from fire drills. Having the unique KBA automation on our new press is crucial, especially the inline color control and auto-register.
“In 2008, we bought three sheetfed presses from a different press manufacturer with offline color control,” continues the company president. “We’ve made the decision that having a press with the inline color control process is a big advantage. Also new on our KBA press is the ability to quickly change our anilox rollers. What was previously a very tedious process will now be automated on our KBA press. This will significantly reduce our material costs, labor, and time when changing rollers for textured reticulation projects.”
Allied Printing Services prides itself on its pro-environmental policies, which was a key driver in the Rapida decision. Sommers notes that the new KBA press will produce less waste than its current presses thus creating a positive environmental impact. The KBA Rapida 106 press will allow Allied to get up-to-color much faster thereby eliminating waste and pushing Allied toward a solid carbon neutral footprint.
“After evaluating several different scenarios for a new press, we felt that KBA far and away exceeded our expectations,” reports Sommers. “While other press manufacturers did not appear to be reinvesting in their research and development, we felt that KBA has made a commitment to the offset market. That was important to us. We believe that we are creating a strong long-term partnership with KBA. We were honored to have KBA president and CEO Claus Bolza-Schünemann visit our facility.
“There are so many parallels between our company and KBA. Both firms believe strongly in providing unique solutions specific to each customer that are not out-of-the-box ; both firms work diligently to understand their customers’ business strategy both for today and in the future ; we were impressed with Claus’ engineering background and the ink-in-his-veins, and both firms are in strong healthy financial positions led by next-generation family-run owners. As we continue our partnership, there will certainly be more needs in the future to add sheetfed and web presses to our current fleet of presses.”
As Allied continues to monitor its customers’ print needs, management keeps a firm handle on the market pulse. Sommers says that Allied is finding new ways to mesh variable data with traditional commercial work and linking print with online media through QR codes, PURLs, and web-driven POD campaigns. Packaging and dimensional print are two growth areas for Allied. The management team took quick note of KBA’s strong foothold in the packaging market and its commitment to quality.
Established in 1949, Allied Printing Services is a full service commercial/financial printing services company located in Manchester, CT serving a diverse national customer base of pharmaceutical, financial, retail, point-of-purchase, manufacturing, CD, agency, and direct mailers. Allied offers a turnkey solution to its customers by providing a comprehensive mix of resources, solutions and capabilities. The firm has robust sheetfed, web, and digital press capabilities and its bindery/finishing area is the largest in all of New England. Allied’s mailing, fulfillment, kitting, Print-On-Demand, and variable data capabilities give it a unique value-proposition. Allied is a third- generation family-owned business. Its sales growth places Allied among the top 75 printers in the United States and it is the largest family-owned commercial printer located in New England.
KBA North America is located in Dallas, Texas and a member of the KBA Group. Established almost 200 years ago in Wuerzburg, Germany, Koenig & Bauer AG (KBA) is the oldest and second largest press manufacturer worldwide. KBA's banner, 'People & Print', reflects its dual focus as a leading innovator for print entrepreneurs. The group's product range is the broadest in the industry; its portfolio includes commercial and newspaper web presses, sheetfed offset presses in all format classes, inkjet systems and presses, special presses for banknotes, securities, metal-decorating, smart cards and discs.