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KBA New Generation Rapida 105 Sheetfed Press Customers Opt For Special Configurations

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Press release from the issuing company

KBA North America, a leading sheetfed offset press manufacturer based in Williston, Vt., is reporting a rise in its sales of KBA Rapida 105 41-inch sheetfed offset presses. But a particular trend among commercial and packaging printers has been to request the press specially-configured to their needs, which KBA has a long-held reputation for being the best in the market. “Our belief is to produce presses to the exact specifications of our customers,” says Ralf Sammeck, president and CEO of KBA North America. “Since not every printer is alike, each customer is treated individually and given the option to specify exactly which features they need on their presses. KBA is finding that its customers are choosing special configurations, such as perfecting, coating, UV/hybrid, and other options, to add to its presses for a totally unique press line.” Cedar Graphics, one of the largest printing companies in the U.S. and among the largest sheetfed printers in the Midwest, installed two KBA Rapida 105 41-inch sheetfed presses in early 2006, one of which was a ten-color five-over-five perfector. This press was the first of a new generation 41-inch press to be configured as a long perfector press in the country. The award-winning general commercial printer located in Hiawatha, Iowa, also installed a straight six-color sheetfed press. “First and foremost were the features on both presses and the timing of our need for the installation. KBA worked with us to fit our exact needs,” says Hassan Igram, CEO of Cedar Graphics. “Second, we were impressed with the people at KBA who kept us abreast of all their on going technological advancements. Third, we were impressed by KBA as a company. Unlike the other press manufacturers, KBA not only had the press configuration we needed, they seem to anticipate what the customer needs and a press operator needs to be successful. KBA is extremely customer-centric!” The KBA 41 inch 10-color long perfector press has the ability to print five-over-five perfecting jobs as well as straight ten colors due to its automatic convertible system. The ten-color also has a tower coater and dryer, KBA’s Densitronic system, and ability to print on both paper and board. The new Rapida 105 ten-color perfector is also equipped with a roll-to-sheet feeder to allow the firm to buy roll paper and cut it according to job specifications. “The roll-to-sheet feeder gives us both cost savings and time savings,” say Igram. “Now we’ll only have to stock limited types of paper and the sheeter will cut an infinite number of paper sizes for us. It gives us the ability to buy paper for less cost and automatically inventory.” Another growing printer, the Garvey Group, which has a network of printing facilities throughout the Midwest, installed a new KBA Rapida 105 41-inch ten-color five-over-five perfector press at its Sturtevant, WI location in early January 2006. Quantum leap in technology “This press is a quantum leap in technology,” says Ed Halbur, general manager of the Sturtevant facility. “It has given us a technological edge over our competition. The new press is equipped with all of KBA’s newest technology, including the Logotronic management system and Densitronic S closed loop color control system. It’s equipped with UV/hybrid capabilities. Plus, we have a coater at the end of the fifth unit to give us more options and more flexibility with our workflow. We can use the press as a straight five-color or perfect with five-over-five. For our longer run length jobs, the new press is more economical to run.” The KBA Rapida 105 41-inch eight-color sheetfed press with coater is equipped with an array of KBA high-tech systems, including KBA’s Logotronic management system and KBA’s Densitronic S closed loop color control system, a combined density and color measuring system for quality control both during and after printing. The Rapida’s computer control console allows Garvey’s two-man press operation to control the entire press run from the feeder to the delivery. Color control can now be dialed in from the prepress department to efficiently set the color parameters to the client’s exact standards.The Garvey Group also had the press equipped with a roll-to-sheet feeder to enable the firm to take advantage of less-costly paper roll prices that the firm can cut to a customer’s desired size and pass the savings on to its customers. Plus, adds Halbur, the roll-to-sheet feeder is a great tool for the second pressman and feeder operator because there is no need for piling or turning of the stock. “We bought the new Rapida ten-color perfector to serve our customers better,” says Halbur. “All of the automation on press makes us more efficient and cost-effective and allows us to produce our work in a shorter period of time, thus getting the work quickly back to our customers. It’s a great sales tool! We’re able to print 150,000 sheets or less in one day putting them through the perfector. The Rapida is 80% faster than any of our other presses.” Unique remote maintenance system increases uptime dramatically Another unique advancement on the press is the KBA remote maintenance and remote visual analysis systems. This allows a remote service technician in Williston, VT or Germany to access, troubleshoot, and resolve most electrical problems on press, analyze the machinery, and provide software updates. Halbur recalls a recent electrical storm in the area that knocked out power to the facility. After remotely connecting to KBA, the service technician was able to check press electronics and had the press up and running in a few click of the buttons. “We like KBA’s ‘can-do’ attitude,” says Halbur. “We had a list of features that we were looking to add to the press. KBA was very receptive to our needs. Whatever we wanted, they answered that they could do it. And they did! “ In the fall of 2005, CARTONDRUCK USA, a high-quality packaging printer located in Fairview, NJ, opted for a unique eleven-unit, nine-color Rapida 105 41-inch sheetfed press from KBA with double varnishing units. The unique specifications demanded by CARTONDRUCK included: eight printing units followed by two varnish units followed by one additional printing unit followed by a double delivery extension. The press is mounted on a plinth to increase pile capacity. A full interdeck UV system provides the firm with fast drying and the ability to use hybrid UV inks. Automated features include semi-automatic plate changing, automated pile logistics at the feeder, and a non-stop roller plus air-cleaning system at the delivery. “By installing a new KBA nine-color press with two varnish units at our US facility in Fairview, CARTONDRUCK is extending its capacity and scope of performance for the key US market,” says Arndt Schuchardt, vice president of sales for CARTONDRUCK USA. “All customers of the premium folding box packaging brand worldwide will benefit from this addition, in the form of enhanced inline finishing options and higher quality and efficiency. The press' technical properties are unrivalled in the whole of North America. To enable customers to obtain maximum advantage from the technology, the Fairview, NJ plant is linked online with the development center in Obersulm, in the South of Germany. All of the parent company's expertise and development potential are thus available in the USA as well.” “This unique one-of-a-kind press is designed specifically for CARTONDRUCK, its high-end, high-quality production, and its demanding clientele,” says Ed Heffernan, KBA’s district sales manager. “The press was designed for the unique needs of CARTONDRUCK and will help this premium worldwide packaging firm continue its growth in this competitive market.” CARTONDRUCK has production plants and sales outlets in Europe and the USA. Its Obersulm, Germany headquarters employs 360 while the Fairview, NJ operation, which was established in 2002, employs 30. In 2004 the German headquarters operation produced more than 500 million folding cartons. Major international cosmetics brands – among them L’Oréal, Estée Lauder, and Procter & Gamble – generate 95 per cent of the company’s annual sales of $80 million, with sweets manufacturers and other brand names accounting for the remainder. The family-run business, which is managed jointly by chief executives Steffen and Marc Schnizer, exports 65% of its output. The company’s biggest markets are Germany, the USA, France and the UK, though it also exports to Spain, Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxembourg. Minneapolis printer adds unique long perfector Bolger Vision Beyond Print, a 200-employee, $28 million printer in Minneapolis, installed a unique long perfector KBA Rapida 105 earlier this year, which replaced one of Bolger’s four existing 40-inch multicolor presses. “KBA is the only press manufacturer that can print five colors, coat and perfect and then do five color and coat all with UV in this unique configuration,” says Eric Frank, vice president of marketing at KBA North America. “The special cylinders after the perfectors are the key ingredients behind the press. Other press highlights include automatic plate changing, sidelay-free infeed, single-suction belt tables, and adjustment-free gripper bars.”




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