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New Goss Colorliner 70 presses and DigiRail digital inking enhancement add color capabilities at Independent News & Media, Belfast

Press release from the issuing company

October 19th, 2005 – Just in time to cover the IRA stand down – one of the most momentous news items in the History of Northern Ireland – two new Goss Colorliner presses came on-edition at the Belfast Telegraph in July 2005. The installation, which was one of the most complex large newspaper press projects undertaken by Goss International in recent times, involved two new Goss Colorliner press systems totalling eight four-high towers and two folders, as well as major color quality enhancements to two existing Goss Metroliner presses. The Belfast Telegraph is part of The Independent News & Media Group, the largest media company in Ireland and the number one publisher of both national and local newspapers. “We needed to invest in the most advanced technology to ensure our businesses remain responsive to breaking news and to the broader needs of our customers,” states Derek Carvell, Managing Director. “In addition to our own publishing interests, we are also the largest contract newspaper printer in Ireland. All this means that we need production flexibility, as well as the normal requirements for high-quality color and plenty of it.” Before the new installation, the Belfast Telegraph had limited color capacity, with just one four-high tower, added as an extension in the early 1990s, in each of two identical Goss Metroliner press lines. The new installation of two Goss Colorliner presses increases this overall capacity to 160 broadsheet color pages, by adding eight four-high towers, two 2:5:5 jaw folders and eight two-arm core-driven reelstands. To give the flexibility required for The Independent News & Media Group’s diverse portfolio of work, the new double press Goss Colorliner installation has a unique configuration, with one tower offset and inline with the adjacent Metroliner press. This allows one double-width web to be routed to one of the folders on the Colorliner press, or to the folder of the Metroliner press. According to Trevor Foster, Operations Director, “This configuration gives us the ability to bring more color into one of the older press lines, considerably increasing the flexibility of our production capabilities.” The need for flexibility was one of the main reasons behind the complexity of the Belfast project. “Sorting the web paths for this configuration was just a small part of our project management task,” states Steve Kimber, Project Manager for Goss. “The ability to run jobs across two presses also required all units involved to print with the same color quality and to have a level of control sophistication not available on the older press units.” To solve the problem Independent News & Media opted to standardize and enhance color quality across all 44 couples of the Goss Metroliner presses by installing Goss DigiRail digital inking, and converting the dampening system to the latest spraybar model. In addition, a major control systems upgrade provided the much needed flexibility and new levels of ‘pre-set and forget’ automation that allows the press crews to take full advantage of their enhanced installation. “A controls upgrade of this complexity is like performing a heart transplant with the patient awake,” states Steve Kimber. “The controls infrastructure affects every part of the press, but you can’t just strip out the old systems and replace them - newspapers still need to be printed every day on the existing presses. Very careful planning and many hours of simulation on the Colorliner tower in our Preston manufacturing plant provided the solution.” Keith Malcolm, Goss Vice President of Newspaper Sales, Europe confirms, “Goss has always driven towards maximum automation. The presses at Belfast now have a totally integrated controls system, which with the press enhancements provides print consistency, and many of the benefits associated with a modern automated press.” The new control system not only configures the press and controls the ink densities, but also oversees a whole host of settings that affect the overall quality of the printed product, such as color registration and ribbon control into the folders. With its sister City West print plant in Dublin, Independent News & Media prints the Irish Independent, Sunday Independent, Evening Herald, Sunday World, The Belfast Telegraph and The Star – all market leaders in their segments. In addition to contract print work from mainland dailies, News International, Daily Telegraph and Mirror Group Newspapers including The Sun and the News of the World, the Group also publishes eleven local newspapers in counties Cork, Kerry, Dublin, Louth, Wexford and Wicklow. “We have a vast number of customers to satisfy,” comments Trevor Foster. “This successful Goss upgrade to our capabilities has had an extremely positive response from advertisers and readers of our own titles and from contract print customers. By expanding the flexibility, color content and quality of our printing capabilities, we have positioned Independent News & Media in the forefront of newspaper printing technology in Northern Ireland. We will now be able to meet the emerging trends in the newspaper marketplace, and offer our customers better products and a more efficient service.”