ROI on CTP--To Buy or Not to Buy?
After reviewing the various platesetters and performing a cost-benefit analysis between conventional platemaking and CTP, Demske says, "It didn't take long to figure out that CTP was the best option. I knew it would save us money and require fewer employees than conventional platemaking."
Reducing the labor force was one issue Demske considered in determining his ROI; training his prepress manager and two prepress technicians to become in-house service specialists was another, which is exactly what happened after a Printware system was purchased.
H.C. Miller has realized a multitude of benefits from CTP. Demske says platemaking costs are about half that of conventional, and there's 50 percent faster turnaround. Also, he's seeing better press utilization, which includes improved registration and throughput of paper.
In Search of a Better Deal
"Cost per plate, that's the bottom line. We went strictly on price in making our decision [to change CTP systems]," says Craig Yolitz, prepress director at The West Group, a publisher/printer located in Eagan, MN. "We're paying 50 percent less than our current CTP plates."
The West Group, which has been using CTP since 1993, started with a Krause LaserStar system, then added three Creo devices. Pleased with the performance of the platesetters but not the cost of the plates, Yolitz says the company switched gears in July and installed the first of four basysPrint CTcP (computer-to-conventional-plate) systems (distributed by Citiplate).
Already a high-volume user of Citiplate plates on its (pre-CTP) projection-platemaking systems, The West Group prints mostly small runs that average 5,000 impressions. Using some 600,000 plates each year, Yolitz is rightfully concerned with the cost of plates.
"basysPrint is going to save us $1.1 million a year on plate costs alone," says Yolitz. "That easily justifies the cost of the equipment."
Can't beat the simplicity of this printer's ROI calculation.