Second week’s DRUPA focus is firmly digital

Jun 05, 2024 at 03:20 pm by admin

An order for 15 HP presses puts the focus on digital as DRUPA enters its final week.

A “strategic cooperation” will see RR Donnelley & Co expand its fleet with an undisclosed mix of Pagewide inkjet and Indigo presses to be delivered to locations in North America, China and Central America.

The deal gives Donnelley early access to technology, while the equipment will support that already in use in commercial, packaging, direct mail and statement print segments over three decades.

By comparison, other DRUPA deals – or at least those being announced – pale into relative insignificance.

Sydney-headquartered Reacon Group signed for a Fujifilm JetPress 1160CF inkjet web at the show, bringing the first of the new 160 metres/minute lines to its mmw3degrees business. Installation of the dual-engine press is set for Sydney or Canberra. Reacon has sales offices in Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand and Vietnam, with plans to execute campaigns for a global agency across SE Asia.

There are also unconfirmed reports of a first sale for Kodak’s speedy Prosper Ultra 7000 press, which uses a “not quite inkjet” continuous flow process. The show itself features an Ultra 520 Prosper with inline folding and trimming.

Incidentally – though not perhaps, for conventional offset print sites – Kodak has also used DRUPA to launch a new wide-width Prosper imprinting option.

Elsewhere, the DRUPA focus for the news industry isn’t about new sales – despite the eight-year hiatus – but rather about maintaining and upgrading the kit you have… and ensuring that the vendors on whom you rely can survive in the current environment.

News of QIPC-EAE’s acquisition of Spanish mark-based colour control developer 3TControl was fresh as DRUPA opened, with the focus partly on consolidation. The closed-loop system takes a ‘cloud of dots’ approach to density control instead of using TIFF files to measure density from an image, eliminating the need for complex workflows and making it suitable for certain emerging markets. There’s more on the story here.

(Pictured, without the once-trademark white suits, but still with complementary attire, are Menno Jansen, right, catching a quick handshake photo with 3T’s Kurt Übelher)

Later, QIPC-EAE also had a major platform upgrade at Centro Stampa Quotidiana in Erbusco, Italy, to celebrate. Based in beautiful Lombary region, the company prints newspapers large and small, using both offset and inkjet.

As the show continued, some of the Ferag team also took time out for a photo, posting this group shot as well as pictures from their “sustainable extension of service life” theme on LinkedIn.

Orders for newspaper presses are either non-existent or closely-guarded, but with print publishing trends favouring smaller presses, Indian maker Manugraph had an installation to announce. An M-360 sold through a new relationship with Seiken Graphic will be their second newspaper web in Japan (the last was in 2016) and is currently being installed.

Seiken, who brand the press as the Seiken 36, are hoping to sell more of Manugraph’s compact presses as existing newspaper equipment ages, as well as in the book printing segment.

Koenig & Bauer’s DRUPA presentation brought back memories of past press conferences, at which the German maker would present its estimates of how many presses its rivals had sold.

Not so in this year’s changed and packaging-dominated environment, although the focus networked environment had appeal for a broader market. New digital products are centred around the myKyana portal, with a focus on performance and enhanced by AI-supported Kyana Assist.

For those with a real interest in packaging, the tech platform promises virtual product configuration based on a “digital twin” of its automation systems. The company also showed RotaJet inkjet applications mostly in décor and high-volume packaging, as well as K&B Durst showings that bring digital to its high-end packaging markets including healthcare and cosmetics.

Peter Coleman

Pictured (top): Donnelley will have early access to HP’s emerging technology

Sections: Print business


or Register to post a comment