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KBA Attracts Large Crowds at Graph Expo 2015 Seeking Its Leading Edge Technology

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Press release from the issuing company

Graphic arts decision-makers met with KBA executives on new technology for all markets

Large crowds of key decision-makers from the commercial, packaging, digital, flexo, and newspaper markets gathered daily at the KBA North America booth at GRAPH EXPO 15 to learn more about KBA’s wide range of new technology and how this technology can improve their own performance and profits. GRAPH EXPO 15 and the co-located CPP EXPO were held September 13 - 16, 2015 at Chicago's McCormick Place South.

“Our innovations in sheetfed commercial and packaging press technology, our growth into new markets such as KBA-Flexotecnica, the introduction of our new KBA RotaJET digital production press line, and our large-format leadership position prompted a swell of interest at our booth,” says Mark Hischar, president and CEO of KBA North America. “GRAPH EXPO 15 was an undeniable success. Our expert sales force provided attendees with unique knowledge on how to empower profitability and open new revenue streams. What’s our secret? KBA has consistently broadened its market reach over recent years across all printing segments.”

Attendees were keen to learn more about KBA’s new Rapida 105 PRO, a new medium-format sheetfed offset press model that was just launched in June 2015. One of the Rapida 105 PRO’s key features is the full preset capabilities from the feeder through the printing units to delivery. All of the settings at the feeder and delivery can be stored according to job type, which can be leveraged with repeat jobs or orders printed on the same substrate.

Intense interest continued for KBA’s entry into the digital press market with its new RotaJET 130 L and RotaJET 168 VL digital inkjet models. Product managers were busy identifying the enormous range of applications for book, commercial, direct mail and publications printing as well as additional industrial application fields, like decorative and packaging printing for these popular new presses.  The modular RotaJET L platform is available in five different web widths from 35.2 - 51.1in and can be upgraded to the maximum printing width and color content or configured to suit all fundamental application areas in the high-volume digital printing segment. Retrofitting future generations of printing heads is also possible allowing users to react quickly and economically to changing demands. Along with the new 89-130 series based on the RotaJET L platform and the RotaJET 76 (max. printing width 30.7in) for book, commercial, magazine and newspaper printing, KBA has built the RotaJET VL inkjet range with a printing width of over 5.2ft or even over 6.6ft for industrial applications.

At the firm’s annual press conference, more than two dozen national and international industry editors and media attended a packed room in which KBA Group president and CEO Claus Bolza-Schünemann provided an international perspective and spoke about KBA’s presence at Drupa along with Mark Hischar, president and CEO of KBA North America, Soren Larsen, KBA senior vice president of sheetfed offset sales, and Eric Frank, KBA vice president of marketing and product management. Bolza-Schünemann is also the president of Drupe 2016, the world-wide leading trade fair of the print media industry.

Eric Frank introduced the panel with a maxim that continued throughout the presentation: that KBA is bullish on the print market. “Our order intake for the first half of the year was 30% higher than that of the same period in 2014,” said Bolza-Schünemann. 

Continuing that thread of growth, Hischar remarked, “We’re looking to hire service support staff for electrical, mechanical, and demonstration, just to name a few. This is all based on our growing market share in all segments and how we need to continually be completely customer-oriented.” 

Larsen emphasized increasing sales in the packaging and commercial printing markets. “A fierce passion for customer satisfaction is a strong arsenal in our company,” he said. “What we are seeing in this market is an effort on the part of printers to do more with less, and try to cut out as many steps as possible. That is reflected in the continuing demand for customized machines from KBA.”

Not only were attendees learning about the firm’s offset and digital press models but showing an increased appetite for KBA’s growth into the flexible packaging market with its new KBA-Flexotecnica subsidiary for flexible packaging.  KBA-Flexotecnica develops, builds, distributes and services central-impression flexographic presses for printing on flexible packaging materials.

Following the annual conference of the International Newspaper Group (ING) in Chicago held the day before GRAPH EXPO began, a number of large, well-known newspaper publishers met with KBA web offset executives to discuss the firm’s newspaper press models as well as its web service retrofit/rebuild programs. 

KBA has already committed to attend next year’s GRAPH EXPO 16 which will take place September 25 - 28, 2016 in Orlando’s Orange County Convention Center.


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