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Kodak Opens World's Newest Printing Plate Manufacturing Facility in Xiamen, China

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Press release from the issuing company

XIAMEN, CHINA, Nov. 6 2007 - On a landmark day for Eastman Kodak Company in China, Kodak customers, distributors, industry leaders and government representatives joined the company to celebrate the grand opening of the world's newest printing plate manufacturing facility in Xiamen, China. The state of the art Kodak facility will produce both digital and conventional printing plates, and will be part of the locally manufactured computer to plate (CTP) solutions from Kodak for the growing China market and Asia Pacific region. 
"This is an important occasion for our commercial printing customers in China and around the world. Kodak's $50 million investment in plate manufacturing in China demonstrates our strong commitment to offset printing and strengthening our position in the graphic communications industry," said Philip J. Faraci, President and Chief Operating Officer, Eastman Kodak Company, during a plant opening ceremony held today. "The Xiamen plant significantly increases our total manufacturing capacity worldwide, which is critical to our customers as the demand for computer to plate printing solutions continues to grow. It also provides a base of operations to increase our service and support for customers in China and the Asia Pacific."
Approximately 350 people attended the official opening ceremonies, including Faraci and the following Kodak representatives: Andrew Copley, Chief Operating Officer, Graphic Communications Group (GCG) and Vice President, Eastman Kodak Company; Jeff Hayzlett, Chief Business Development Officer and Vice President, Eastman Kodak Company; Gustavo Oviedo, Managing Director, Asia Pacific Region, and Vice President, GCG; John Robinson, General Manager and Vice President, Printing Plate Business, Prepress Solutions, GCG; and Ying Yeh, Chairman and President, North Asia Region, General Manager, External Affairs, Asia and Vice President, Eastman Kodak Company.
Among the other attendees representing the Chinese government and printing industry were:  Mr. Yongzhan Yu, former Vice Minister of the General Administration of Press and Publication of the P.R.C, Chairman of the Printing Technology Association of China; Mr. Xinli Li, Deputy Director of Shanghai Press and Publication Administration; Mr. Hao Yu, Director of Xiamen Press & Publication Administration; Mr. Wenxiang Wu, The Honour Chairman of Printing Technology Association of China; and Mr. Shuangru Zhang, Vice Chairman of Printing Technology Association of China.
 The new facility is located at Kodak's research and manufacturing center in Xiamen. Occupying nearly 21,000 square meters, the new plant will produce KODAK ELECTRA EXCEL Thermal Plates. Considered the largest selling digital plate ever, the ELECTRA EXCEL plate is a no preheat thermal plate that delivers excellent versatility and reliability for a wide range of printing applications. In addition to digital plate production, the Kodak Xiamen plant will also meet the strong demand in China for conventional printing plates, producing KODAK WINNER GOLD Negative Plates.
"Our Xiamen plant will incorporate Kodak printing plate production expertise from around the world into what we believe is the most advanced plate manufacturing facility anywhere," said Robinson. "The team in Xiamen is experienced and highly qualified. Many of our employees come from Kodak's other operations in Xiamen. They are skilled in the process manufacturing required for high quality plate production, as well as in Kodak's quality standards and LEAN manufacturing practices."
Along with the new facility in Xiamen, Kodak is creating a dedicated China Technical Applications Group (TAG) to provide technical support to customers in China and the Asia Pacific. Kodak already has TAG operations serving Europe and the Americas.
In addition to the Xiamen plant, there are seven other Kodak plate production facilities around the world, including: Munich, Germany; Osterode, Germany; Leeds, U.K., Sofia, Bulgaria; Gunma, Japan; Windsor, Colo., U.S.; and Columbus, Ga., U.S.
Kodak's leading plate portfolio includes flexographic, sheetfed, and web offset printing solutions for commercial, newspaper, and packaging printers. Since inventing thermal plates in 1995 with the introduction of the DIRECT IMAGE Thermal Plate, Kodak has led the way in innovative CTP solutions, including the ELECTRA plate, the first no preheat thermal plate; the KODAK SWORD Plate, the first no preheat/no postbake write the background thermal plate with negative processing; the KODAK THERMALNEWS Digital Plate, the first thermal newspaper plate; and the KODAK THERMAL DIRECT Non Process Plate, the first truly non process plate.
Beyond thermal plates, Kodak's broad portfolio of digital plates offers options for visible light technologies, including the KODAK VIOLET PRINT Digital Plate for commercial printing and KODAK VIOLETNEWS Digital Plates for newspaper publishing.
For the packaging market, earlier this year Kodak announced the new KODAK FLEXCEL NX Digital Flexographic System, which provides previously unachievable near offset print quality on a wide variety of substrates, including paper, flexible film, foil, and label stock.
Kodak's printing plates are part of a full solution portfolio, including a broad range of proofing choices and platesetters, as well as the widely accepted KODAK PRINERGY Workflow System. In proofing, Kodak offers digital halftone, inkjet, virtual and analog proofing. In platesetting, customers can select equipment that leads the industry, including KODAK TRENDSETTER and MAGNUS CTP Platesetters, using KODAK SQUARESPOT Imaging Technology to provide exceptionally high resolution images. In addition, KODAK STACCATO Screening offers high fidelity, continuous tone images that exhibit fine detail and an extended color gamut.
"With manufacturing in eight plants on three different continents, Kodak is able to produce plate solutions that are tailored to the regions where are customers are doing business," Robinson said. "The Xiamen plant solidifies Kodak's plate leadership around the world."




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