In order to get a clearer picture of the atti-tudes of printers about the bindery, the Print Industries Market Information and Research organization (PRIMIR) commissioned State Street Consultants and Larry Tanowitz to do an update of the 1996 NPES study. The new study entitled The Market Potential and Installed Base for Traditional Bindery/Finishing Technologies analyzes the same forces that transformed pre-press and press rooms over the last decade and are now reshaping the tradi-tional bindery. This study profiles the North American installed base of in-line and off-line production bindery/finishing equipment by type, format (size), cycle speed, age, market, and shop size, to characterize the status of the current bindery, broken out by in-plant, production digital printer, commercial printer and trade bindery. The study also addresses barriers and drivers for bindery investment decisions including automation, JDF readiness, and CIP4, among others. The study also identifies bindery areas where printers still depend upon manual hand-labor operations, and areas in greatest need for automation. So what are some of the major findings?
Finishing: The New Prepress
Today, anyone with a computer and a digi-tal camera can create layouts and bring them in for the printer to run. So the prepress expertise that drove so much revenue is now quickly drying up, leaving printers looking for new ways to attract business. The answer lies in the bindery, where the ability to cut, fold, trim, bind and die cut sets its expertise apart. That means the ability to finish, assemble and fulfill work opens new opportunities.
Changes in Customer Demand Drive Finishing
Short runs and fast turnarounds have become the hallmark of today’s printing envi-ronment. This means that time and labor-intensive processes like makeready are no longer profitable. To make jobs profitable, binderies must be able to set up the machines in a matter of hours, the longer and more labor-intensive the work to set up the machines, the lower the profit on shorter runs.