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Breakthrough VUTEk BioVu Inks From EFI Now Commercially Available

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Press release from the issuing company

FOSTER CITY, Calif.- Dec 13 2006 -EFI, the world leader in color digital print servers, superwide format inkjet printers and inks, and print management solutions for commercial and enterprise printing, today announced commercial availability of its VUTEk BioVu inks – the first environmentally friendly solvent inks made with totally renewable resources. BioVu is another of EFI’s "Green" initiatives and part of the company’s long-held commitment to improving the environment and benefiting its global customers. “Unlike many new products, which are step change improvements, BioVu ink is a revolutionary advancement that will improve not only our customers’ environmental footprint, but also their bottom lines,” said Guy Gecht, EFI CEO. “It represents our commitment to protecting an increasingly fragile Earth, one we hope others in the industry will follow.” “We have been testing the inks in the U.S. and Europe for nearly a year, with the final formulation in the field for the last 60 days,” said Scott Schinlever, vice president and general manager of EFI’s ink division. “The results have exceeded expectations, and we are very excited about making this unique ink commercially available to the superwide format industry.” VUTEk BioVu from EFI is the first solvent-based ink made from a renewable resource (derived from corn), and the only ink recognized by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), thereby establishing an entirely new category of truly environmentally friendly inks. EFI’s BioVu ink is made from food-grade ingredients yet delivers the benefits of traditional solvent inks without the compromises inherent in eco-solvent and aqueous inks. This includes the same color gamut as traditional solvent inks so that users can seamlessly switch to these environmentally conscious inks with no workflow or prepress process modifications. Like other solvent-based inks, VUTEk BioVu provides extreme durability, strong bonding to uncoated surfaces and great resistance to UV light and mechanical wear. But unlike other solvent inks on the market, BioVu inks are designed specifically to run in high-production environments and provide high print quality while delivering the best health and environmental profile in the marketplace. Although water-based inks are also environmentally friendly, they have significant limitations in terms of the applications for which they can be used. And other solvent-based inks positioned as environmentally friendly still offer poor health and environmental profiles and contain volatile organic compounds (VOCs) with hazardous air pollutants (HAPs), a component deemed by the U.S. EPA to have a particularly poor toxicological profile when released to the environment through evaporation. “Each year, commercial formulators use millions of pounds of chemical ingredients that one way or another find their way into the environment,” said Schinlever. “Our customers have made it clear that they want the ability to print superwide graphics without bothersome fumes or expensive ventilation systems. Our environmentally friendly BioVu ink, made from renewable resources, is the only ink that effectively addresses these concerns.” One such customer is The Big Print of San Francisco and Seattle. “In developing our BioGraphix environmentally friendly printing platform, we have sourced a variety of environmentally friendly materials, including fabrics manufactured in VOC-free factories and pressure sensitive vinyl alternatives,” said Jon Zinsmeyer, founder and president and one of the VUTEk BioVu test sites. “Until now, the missing link has been environmentally friendly solvent inks for superwide format printers. VUTEk BioVu inks from EFI have filled that gap.” Other business benefits of VUTEk BioVu inks include lower disposal costs since there are no hazardous materials (hazmat); reduced odor on final printed materials; and a more comfortable working environment for employees. In new shops or installations, no ventilation and burner systems are required to meet OSHA regulations since there are no harmful VOC emissions. The patent-pending, preferable chemistry inks include VUTEk’s BioVu in Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, Black and BioVu Light Cyan, Light Magenta, Light Yellow and Light Black for superwide format inkjet printing operations. BioVu inks are manufactured for use on EFI’s VUTEk 3360 solvent printer. EFI plans to extend BioVu inks to its currently offered superwide format solvent printer models in 2007. In addition to the development of environmentally friendly VUTEk BioVu inks, EFI has been leading by example with other environmentally conscious initiatives. EFI Fiery® digital print servers were among the first to ship as RoHS (Restriction of the use of Hazardous Substances)-compliant, representing an unprecedented engineering development effort and manufacturing implementation. Additionally, EFI’s 10 story, 300,000 square foot corporate headquarters is designed to harness the Earth’s natural resources to aid in heating and cooling the space. EFI’s energy conservation measures save the equivalent of 783 kilowatts of energy per day, which is enough to power approximately 600 homes.




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