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Heidelberg To Host PostPress Inforum

Monday, November 27, 2006

Press release from the issuing company

Nov 27, 2006 --Over 700 customers and interested visitors from 30 countries have registered for the Postpress Inforum organized by Heidelberg in Ludwigsburg. From November 23-30, 2006, this venue will be showcasing the latest trends and developments in the postpress sector. Taking as its theme "Customized solutions for postpress", the event will offer a comprehensive overview to customers from Europe, Asia (Japan), the US, and Africa. "We are using Inforum to showcase the latest machines recently unveiled at the Ipex trade show in Birmingham in the UK plus our complete postpress portfolio", explains Dr. Friedrich Denkhaus, Head of the Postpress Division at Heidelberg. The Ludwigsburg site combines development, assembly, and sales skills for folders, deliveries, and mailing systems. A total of 450 staff are employed there, including 29 trainees in industrial engineering and commercial vocational training. The TH/KH folder generation, unveiled at drupa 2004, has become firmly established on the market. Over 2,000 machines from this series have been shipped worldwide. Integration of the folders into the Heidelberg workflow offer customers major benefits. "To cut costs and keep them cut, we have outsourced virtually all of our production and here in Ludwigsburg we operate strategic supplier management. We are aided in this by the fact that we use the Heidelberg site at NovÈ Mesto as a supplier and the Qingpu plant near Shanghai to assemble special folders for the Chinese market", explains Rolf Munz, Ludwigsburg site manager. On the production side, assembly processes have been improved and the complete IT infrastructure has been upgraded. As well as product presentations, the Postpress Inforum will also feature lectures on topics such as "Integrated postpress", "Quality enhancement for short and medium runs in perfect binding", and "Extended options for producing special advertising products". The range of machines comprises folders in formats 30 x 50 centimeters (11.81 x 19.69 inches), 50 x 70 centimeters (19.69 x 27.56 inches), and 70 x 100 centimeters (27.56 x 39.37 inches), the Flexomailer, saddlestitchers, and perfect binders. Ultimate added value created in postpress Heidelberg sees the postpress market segment as a strategic division for supplying its customers with complete solutions along the added value chain. Sales in the postpress sector grew around 14 percent in the last financial year and thereby outperformed the competition. Sales of folders rose by 29 percent in the last financial year 2005/2006. With sales of 398 million Euro in the last financial year, the postpress sector made up over 11 percent of Heidelberg's total sales (3,586 million Euro). In the current financial year, Heidelberg is aiming to move into the black in this area for the first time. Heidelberg covers print industry needs with an extensive product portfolio. This includes systems and machines for folding, collating, binding, and stitching magazines, brochures, and books, and punching and gluing folding cartons. The presses on offer range from the simple folder right up to the industrial bookbinding machine, which features high levels of automation and is network-compatible. "Our latest products from the postpress sector mean we have the most extensive range of solutions in the industry. We are proud of our commitment to innovation as most postpress machines have only been on the market for two years or even less", explains Dr. Denkhaus. The finished print product is given the final touch in the postpress stage and is upgraded as necessary with unusual folds or by attaching product samples. The target groups are smaller commercial printers, industrial print shops and specialists such as bookbinders. Postpress is the sector where customers have the greatest potential for rationalization and can give themselves a distinctive edge over their competitors. Global postpress sites The Postpress Division consists of various sites in Germany and abroad, enabling it to respond flexibly to changes in market requirements and make the most of a global pool of suppliers. On January 1, 1999, Heidelberg took over the Stahl Group, the world market leader in folders, headquartered in Ludwigsburg, and integrated sales of these products, which had been available worldwide for over 30 years. The Stahl Group included Brehmer, the Leipzig bookbinding machine manufacturer. The Leipzig site celebrated its 125th anniversary in 2004. Another member of the Stahl Group was Baumfolder Corp. in Sidney, Ohio, U.S. The Folding Carton Processing Division of the Jagenberg Group, D¸sseldorf, was integrated into the Heidelberg Group on January 31, 2003. With folder gluers and die-cutters, now produced at the Mˆnchengladbach site, Heidelberg entered the key growth market that is packaging printing. Heidelberg produces folder gluers for the international market at the NovÈ Mesto (Slovakia) site and supplies Mˆnchengladbach with mechanical components. Various saddlestitcher subassemblies are also manufactured here for the Leipzig site. Heidelberg recently opened a new, 1,600-square-meter assembly hall in NovÈ Mesto. At the end of September this year, Heidelberg unveiled its new assembly hall in Qingpu near Shanghai, China, its first plant in Asia. Production started at the site back in spring 2006. Since then, assembly work in the Qingpu industrial zone, which is situated on the western edge of Shanghai with its 13 million inhabitants, has focused primarily on a specific series of folders for finishing print products. Key parts for the machines are initially being supplied by German production sites. However, in the medium term, approximately 80 percent of parts are to be sourced from local Chinese suppliers. The folders are aimed at the Chinese market. In a second stage, assembly of a series of small-format presses was started up in summer. For the time being, these products too are to be marketed solely in China.




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