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Carlson Print Group Continues Growth with the Installation of PictroProof

Press release from the issuing company

HANOVER PARK, Ill. (August 4, 2003) – Carlson Print Group is continuing its trend as one of “America’s Fastest Growing Printers” with its installation of Fujifilm’s PictroProof contone proofer, says Rod Franson, Carlson’s operations manager. The Bloomington, Minn.-based commercial printer doubled its size between 1997 and 2000 and was recognized by American Printer magazine as one of America’s fastest growing printers. The family-owned company was founded in 1996 by cousins Jason and Jed Carlson and now has 60 employees. Franson says the company had been using Fujifilm’s ColorArt system prior to going CTP almost three years ago. “We were 100% CTP for over two years using Fujifilm’s CTP plates before we bought the PictroProof six months ago,” he notes. Patrick Kenney, Carlson’s prepress manager, says customer requests for proofing alternatives prompted the company to purchase the PictroProof. “Some customers began asking for a better quality and yet cheaper proof,” stressed Kenney. “They expected the quality to be better than our existing inkjet proofs and as close to our current high-end dot proof for a lot less expense. Our current high-end proof is a lot more expensive to run than the PictroProof, but it’s hard to convince certain clients to step away from a dot proof.” The PictroProof is a dye-based contone proofer that requires no chemicals or toners, just distilled water to process. “The PictroProof definitely increased our throughput and made us more competitive in the prepress department,” Franson explains. “If prepress costs are not competitive, odds are we will not be awarded the print of any given project. Our press operators are able to match color of the PictroProof at press just as fast as our high-end dot proof. The majority of the press operators prefer the PictroProof over the other proofs.” Kenney adds that PictroProof is also much cheaper to run, which in turn, increases the company’s bottom line. “It definitely increased our productivity because it’s an automated system and there is no manual intervention. It improved our throughput and saves us and our clients money.” He explains that the transition went extremely well and that the PictroProof integrated seamlessly with the company’s Prinergy workflow system. Kenney says the company saw an 11 percent increase in volume in last year’s tough market and is on pace for the same, if not higher, projections already this year. Franson notes that the Carlson Print Group is also looking into adding Fujifilm’s SWOP-certified FINALPROOF Luxel 5600 digital contract proofer. The PictroProof is also SWOP-certified and color-matched to the FINALPROOF. “Because of the automation, the cost of the FINALPROOF will be a fair amount cheaper than our current system and should eliminate some of the existing bottlenecks that may occur from time to time,” Franson explains. “This means our overall operating expenses would be less. We will have more to offer with higher quality, gaining throughput, at a more competitive price.”