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Hollinger Suburban Chicago Newspapers Buy UV CTP/C

Press release from the issuing company

Rolling Meadows, IL June 3, 2003 - alfaQuest Technologies, Inc. and Hollinger International have entered into an Agreement whereby alfaQuest will provide conventional CTP/C plate-making systems, along with PrintExpress Consolidated Production Management workflow systems to meet the requirements of: The Beacon News (Aurora, IL); The Courier News (Elgin, IL); The Herald News (Joliet, IL); The News Sun (Waukegan, IL); and Sun Publications. The FasTRAK CTP/C platesetter's breakthrough technology allows high-volume plate consumers, such as newspapers, to fully commit to CTP technology by exposing conventional UV sensitive plates at high speeds, instead of the high cost specialty plates required by thermal or visible light CTP technologies. Jeff Kane, Director, Information Systems, at Chicago Suburban Newspapers stated: "with the FasTRAK CTP/C, alfaQuest presented Suburban Southtown Newspapers with an opportunity to eliminate all of our film and chemistry costs without having to apply these savings to high cost CTP plates. When we compared the ROI of FasTRAK CTP/C against Thermal CTP, the return over five years was more than double! And the ROI continues to grow wider each year when compared to any other CTP technology. This, along with the savings in personnel, reduced our payback to less than two years-which is something that really caught our eye. In the initial stages of our CTP investigation, alfaQuest did not have FasTRAK CTP/C systems in the field. We visited their manufacturing facility in Billerica Massachusetts, where we imaged our files on conventional plates-that's when we committed to alfaQuest. Since then we've visited The American Press in Lake Charles, Louisiana, to evaluate FasTRAK CTP/C in a live production environment, and it was gratifying to see Lake Charles had been running without any issues. With the number of FasTRAK CTP/C installations growing each month, this is going to be one heck of a year for alfaQuest. Another highlight was when competition had us double check the laser life and replacement cost. alfaQuest assured us the laser was rated at 21,000 hours and the diodes 10,000 hours. We went a step further and contacted the manufacturer, and found the numbers alfaQuest quoted were on the conservative side. The manufacturer has had these units in daily production for many years in the circuit board manufacturing industry. Realizing alfaQuest was being conservative gave us even more confidence in the technology. Coupled with the installation of three (3) FasTRAK CTP/C 75 units and TRAKmate (autoloaders), we are also replacing our current distributed workflow system with alfaQuest's PrintExpress/CPM (Consolidated Production Management). PrintExpress/CPM will provide Suburban Southtown Newspapers with a complete and integrated CTP workflow, including: PDF, TIFF, and PostScript workflows; imposition, page tracking, and soft proofing. Additionally, PrintExpress/CPM provides us with complete hardware and software redundancy in our Editorial facility, as well as our Print facility. We're looking forward to the complete alfaQuest solution following NEXPO '03." alfaQuest Technologies will be exhibiting three (3) FasTRAK CTP/C systems including processors, punch benders and stackers along with its PrintExpress Consolidated Production Management system at the upcoming NEXPO Newspaper Production Conference in Las Vegas, June 16th-19th.