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Le Dauphine Libere chooses Heidelberg Mainstream newspaper presses

Press release from the issuing company

The French regional daily, Le Dauphine Libere, has just ordered two Heidelberg Mainstream presses. The Dauphine Libere is owned by the Delaroche holding company which controls the Rhône-Alpes-Bourgogne division of Socpresse (Le Dauphine Libere, Le Progrès de Lyon, the Journaux de Saône et Loire and Le Bien Public). Its circulation is around 300 000 copies in the Rhône-Alpes region and part of Provence. The regional daily wanted to replace its existing presses on the Veurey Voroize site near Grenoble, with presses of the latest technology. "Updating our production tools is essential if we are to meet the needs of our readership and advertisers, " said Christian Merger, Technical Director of the Dauphine Libere. "The world is evolving around us, and to remain competitive the newspaper is duty bound to offer an attractive medium from the point of view of print quality and contents, increasingly targeted and close to the news and its readers. "0ur new production tool must offer maximum flexibility, more color and lower production costs", he continued. "In addition, it must allow us in the long term to increase the number of our editions, in order to have an optimum balance with the geo-marketing criteria of our distribution area. The Mainstream presses will allow us to meet all these requirements". Launched in May 2000, the Heidelberg Mainstream is an 8 page 1x4 format press (single circumference, double web width) designed to meet the needs of newspaper publishers in terms of speed, quality and production flexibility. The exclusive technology of the tubular blankets, known as ‘Sunday technology’, developed by Heidelberg, eliminates the vibrations created by the blanket cylinder gaps, allowing the Mainstream to deliver an excellent print quality at high speeds. The gapless blankets will allow the press to achieve the necessary dynamic stability to produce up to 80 000 copies per hour in a plate cylinder configuration of 1x4 and a plate cylinder-blanket cylinder ratio of 1:1. "The 1x4 format will allow us to considerably reduce downtime between two editions due to the reduced number of plates to be changed, said Christian Merger, we estimate that the downtime, which is more than 40 % on our current installations, should reasonably fall below 30 %. This is of course not counting the reduced running time generated by the speed of the new machines. The Mainstream presses at the Dauphine Libere will have a 500 mm cut-off and a 1480 mm web width, which will allow the daily newspaper to reduce its final format of 410 mm x 590 mm to 370 mm x 500 mm. They will be installed on the Veurey site. Both Mainstream presses will have the same configuration of 7 webs, 31 inking systems and 3 former plates. They will be equipped with a JF- 255 jaw folder and 7 Contiweb FD splicers. These presses will print up to 56 pages, 20 of which will be in four colours or 48 pages with 24 pages in four colours. They will print up to 3 separate signatures simultaneously. " The Dauphine is distributed in 22 different editions in 9 "departements" of the Rhône-Alpes and Provence Alpes Côte d'Azur regions. Production speed is consequently an absolute necessity for us”, emphasised Christian Merger . The Mainstreams will facilitate changes of editions. The 1X4 format that they offer is very attractive, since it will allow us to reduce plating up time. In addition, mounting and removal of plates is simplified thanks to an exclusive technology which will allows us additional time gains," he concluded. Due to the 1x4 format, the Mainstream requires only half the plates of a 16-page double circumference double width press, an advantage which reduces the cost of the plates, CTP investment, and the time needed to produce and change the plates. The presses will be delivered in spring 2004 for a start up planned in the last quarter of 2004. They will be manufactured at the French Heidelberg site in Montataire, near Paris, specialising in the production of web offset presses. The Mainstream concept is particularly appreciated by French publishers and the sale of the two presses to the Dauphine Libere brings the number of Mainstreams sold in France to 9, the last ones sold being destined for the regional newspaper, the Progrès de Lyon. A total of 21 Mainstream presses have now been sold worldwide, with a total of 697 printing couples. "The success of the Mainstream with the regional daily newspaper press publishers, particularly in France, proves that Sunday technology and the 1x4 format are perfectly suited to publishers’ requirements in this market segment," declared Jacques Navarre, Senior Vice-President, Newspaper Product Center at Heidelberg. "We are pleased that the Dauphine Libere has opted for the Heidelberg web presses. The Mainstreams will meet their needs in terms of productivity and quality color print".