Sales of conventional and digital KBA sheetfed presses have taken off in the Middle East, with a string of installations in Algeria, the UAE, Saudi Arabia and Kuwait.
The Rapida 105 has become one of the most popular sheetfed offset press types in the Middle East
One firm that has invested heavily is Tonic Emballage, which runs a number of printing plants in Algeria. Last year the company started up two 15,000sph B1 Rapida 105s – a five-colour and a six-colour version – plus a six-colour size 7 Rapida 162. All three presses have a coater and double delivery. A 74 Karat DI offset coater press installed last year will be followed by three more this year.
In the United Arab Emirates, a four-colour Rapida 105 made its way last year to Royal Printing Press in Dubai, where a five-colour Rapida 105 is now busy printing commercials and cartons at Dubai Printing Marketing. In a few weeks time Color Lines will be the country’s first printing plant to press the button on a 74 Karat. A coater version will be added in November.
2002 also saw the inauguration of a four-colour Rapida 105 with coater, double delivery and carton facility at El Kharaig, in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. A five-colour version with the same features was shipped in October to another Riyadh printer, Najd Commercial, whose main products are magazines and books. A Rapida 74 joins it in April.
Shipments to Kuwait included a Rapida 105 4/4 perfector press for Al Khat, which is adding a five-colour version with two coaters sometime this year. Al Khat, which installed its first Rapida in the mid-nineties, prints books, magazines and flyers. Two more B1 Rapidas – a four-colour and an eight-colour version for 4/4 – are now in action at the Ministry of Information. Another Kuwaiti firm, Four Films, installed its first Rapida 74 five-colour coater press with extended delivery for printing commercials.
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