KBA North America Announces Sale of World's Largest Press in US at Print 05
Monday, October 10, 2005
KBA North America, a leading supplier of sheetfed offset and digital presses based in Williston, VT, has announced that National Posters, Inc., the flagship company of National Print Group, Inc., headquartered in Chattanooga, TN, has purchased a KBA Rapida 205 81-inch seven-color plus coater sheetfed press at Print 05 & Converting, making it the world’s largest litho press in the U.S. weighing in at almost 600,000 lbs. The press is due to be delivered to the Chattanooga, Tenn. plant in March 2006 with a start-up date of July 2006. “The purchase of this press will be a significant step forward for our company,” says Joel Stuart, general manager of National Posters. “We’ve been hoping for the last 10 years that a press this size would be available and KBA has done it. We’re adding the KBA for capacity reasons and to have the ability to produce jobs using UV hybrid capabilities to attract our existing customers and potential customers. We believe that 35% to 40% of the KBA’s press capacity will be used for existing customers while the remaining press capacity will be filled with potential customer requests.” The signage market represents 60% of National Posters current business. By installing the Rapida 205 with hybrid UV capabilities, the firm will be able to print signage on a wider variety and more rigid substrates. Significant growth in multi-color and custom colors National Posters’ roster of existing presses is capable of printing up to six colors. The new KBA Rapida 205 with seven colors will allow the firm to take advantage of the “significant growth” in multi-color printing and the trend toward using opaque whites, metallic, and custom logo colors. “At Print 05, we’ll be taking advantage of the show’s GATF seminars on UV printing to help our press operators learn how to use that part of the new press,” says Stuart. “The initial interest most customers have in the Rapida 205 is the application of its incredible 81” sheet size,” says Mike Mugavero, vice president of KBA North America. “Once they have the opportunity to see the press in live demonstration, however, the full automation of the press, including its automatic plate loading completely steals the show. Another key component on the press is its integrated production workflow via the KBA Logotronics Professional. All of these systems significantly reduce makeready and therefore increase productivity and justify its ROI.” Founded in 1957 as National Posters, National Print Group has experienced exceptional growth. The firm began with 12 employees and has grown to over 400 employees in five plants. National Print Group is now ranked in the top 125 printers in the U.S. Today, the firm is a one-stop resource for outdoor advertising and point-of-purchase advertising production. National Print Group caters to a nationwide clientele of well-known ad agencies and corporate clients. Its Chattanooga plant employs 150.