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Strategic Business Forms Enjoying Success With New A.B.Dick Equipment

Press release from the issuing company

CHICAGO, IL - Peter Mai knows about change. President of Strategic Business Forms (SBF) in Ocala, Florida, he and his wife, Sharon, started the printing company as a business forms distributorship in 1979. Sharon ran the business while Peter worked at Upjohn Pharmaceuticals, then later at Tandy Corp. Peter came on board full-time in 1990 and, like the industry and the Ocala area, has experienced many changes in the last 12 years. As business at SBF evolved with a demand for commercial printing, the Mais’ have made a series of changes in their choice of equipment. But no decision was as big as the one made in mid-2002. With only 25% of their business in Ocala, they took the company to another level with the purchase of A.B.Dick’s DPM2340 direct-to-plate system and 9995A-ICS twin tower portrait press. The results have been very impressive. “In most ways, this equipment has exceeded our expectations,” said Peter Mai, who employs 25. “We’ve experienced a tremendous savings in costs with faster make-ready and turnaround times. We’ve also reduced our stress level since adding the DPM2340.” The bulk of SBF’s work is one and two-color, but that’s about to change. The company won 20 awards from the Printers Association of Florida in 2001, which triggered research into CTP systems and automated presses to build the bridge for future four-color work. “Most of the direct-to-plate systems were high-priced and not proven products,” recalled Mai. “We established a relationship with A.B.Dick when we bought presses from them in 1996, and we wanted a turnkey system from prepress to press. That’s what the DPM2340 and the 9995A-ICS (Automated plate-loading and Ink Control System) press provides.” Mai’s transition from traditional to digital prepress has been seamless. With the DPM2340, Mai, pressman John Mueller and prepress manager Jim Egert, the self-proclaimed “metal plate believers”, rarely use metal any more. Instead, they run paper and 8-mil polyester plates, saving the 15,000 square-foot operation $3,000 a month. “The quality is tremendous. The DPM is very consistent, the registration is great on paper or polyester, and it is very reliable. We’ve had no problems with its consistency. Some people we asked said the paper plates would stretch, but with the automated plate loading on the 9995A-ICS, that hasn’t happened to us,” said Mai. “This press makes us more productive. The registration is perfect, the automation improves productivity, and our short-run, four-color work looks great. We handle runs of 5,000 or less with two passes on polyester plates, and we are turning it faster.” That is important since Mai bought the equipment with an eye on the future. He admits the company has grown comfortably into its four-color roster of work that includes brochures, catalog sheets and postcards for his vertical niche market. With small private practices and large teaching institutions among his medical clients, Mai sees greater opportunities on the horizon. “Most medical forms are one or two-color but the industry is slowly moving to electronic forms. “The automated features of the DPM2340 and 9995A-ICS can handle downloaded files. We can use the Internet to tie in our Service Center and do it for less money.” A.B.Dick Company is a leading worldwide supplier to the graphic arts and printing industry, manufacturing and marketing equipment and supplies for all stages of document creation -- prepress, press and post-press -- as well as continuing service and support. For more information contact Scott MacKenzie, Vice President, Marketing, 7400 Caldwell Ave., Niles, IL. 60714. Telephone (847) 779-1900, fax (847) 647-6940, web: www.abdick.com.