Editions   North America | Europe | Magazine


Itani Printing & Trading Goes CtP And Again Chooses ECRM Imaging Systems

Press release from the issuing company

August 6, 2004 -- "We never had a problem in over 10 years - why would we want to use any other imaging system?" asks Hisham Itani, Assistant General Manager of Beirut-based Itani Printing & Trading, confirming the purchase of two new products from ECRM Imaging Systems. The new units, a Stingray 52 imagesetter and a MAKO 4 CTP system, will replace two existing ECRM output devices which feed the company's array of one-, two-, four- and five-color presses, eleven in all. The Itani family has roots in the printing industry that go back to 1874. However, it was not until 1973 that the now burgeoning Itani Printing & Trading company was formed to provide commercial print services to the Lebanese capital and its surrounding area. "From the early days, we saw diversification as one of the keys to our success," comments Hisham. "After seven years in commercial print and an untimely attempt to get into airline printing when our country was about to go to war, we gradually moved into business forms and then eventually into cheque personalization and MICR encoding." This soon led Itani Printing & Trading into security print, specializing in stock certificates, identity records and residency permits. With this diversity of work, Itani Printing & Trading needed an image capable output device to replace an old Compugraphic typesetter. "Although we have an entrepreneurial business ethic, we’ve always approached product purchases with a degree of caution. We had to be convinced that the quality, reliability and support were the best available. We found the solution in an ECRM VR45, supplied by local dealer DAF International in 1993." Three years later, the VR45 was joined by a high-speed version of the same imagesetter. As technology advanced, both were later replaced by a Knockout 45/50 and a MAKO 56. "We were working both products to their absolute capacity," adds Hisham. "We were thrilled to see their life spans exceed our expectations. When you work a product as hard as we do, you expect it to fail regularly or wear out sooner than expected. This absolutely does not happen with ECRM products. And, if a minor problem arises, the equipment is so easy to fix that your local dealer can get you running again in no time." These experiences were the deciding factors behind Itani's decision to confidently move to ECRM CTP. In characteristic style, Itani approached the move with caution. “We wanted to make the minimum investment to prove the benefits of CTP before we went too far. The ECRM MAKO 4 was the ideal product with which to take this first step.” The MAKO 4 was delivered and installed in just two days. Integration to Itani's existing workflow system, via the CtServer software, was just as simple. Having made the connection, any digital workflow system can be used to drive the platesetter using 1-bit tiff files. "We were delighted with the initial results. The first generation dots provided a new level of sharpness to all of our work and we were impressed with the high quality reproduction of the microdots printed in security elements on financial documents." Now, after moving to CTP, Itani has transferred a large proportion of business into security print, focusing on lottery tickets, postage stamps, and more recently, credit cards. It was this focus in security print that helped to identify additional benefits to CTP production. "We have always had lots of repeat jobs and needed to hold at least 50,000 individual sets of film. Now, with ECRM CTP, we just re-run the plates. This saves us lots of management time and storage space.” With the purchase of the Stingray 52 and MAKO 4 CTP, Itani Printing & Trading is now planning its next level of expansion. “Our ECRM products provide added consistency and quality,” confirms Hisham. “This gives us the confidence to search out new opportunities. After 10 years of investing in ECRM products, and now MAKO platesetters, we are working to build a comprehensive international sales capability.”