Muller Martini Opts to Halt Web Offset Press Production
HAUPPAUGE, NY—Citing low sales volume, Muller Martini will cease production of printing presses in the first half of 2015; however, it will continue to provide service support for printing press customers worldwide.
As part of its strategic realignment, the company will focus on print finishing, strengthened by its recent takeover of Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG's service and spare parts business for its saddlestitchers, perfect binders and thread-sealing machines.
Muller Martini also based its decision on the "substantial slump in the turnover in the printing presses segment over a prolonged period." That loss in sales was only partly absorbed in recent years, despite extensive periods of short-time work at its press production site in Maulburg, Germany. The "drastic contraction" of the traditional market for forms printing presses over past decades prompted it to focus on new business segments. Its aim was to establish variable-size web offset printing for labels and flexible packaging in the growing packaging market.
"However, despite extensive investments and years of effort, the broad take-up of offset technology on the packaging market has only succeeded to a limited extent," said Bruno Müller, CEO of Muller Martini. Since established business segments such as security and commercial printing could "by no means make up for the loss in volume in recent years," the company believes the chances for successful turnaround by itself or with partners are extremely slim.