Cedar Graphics Places Order for Two KBA Rapida 105 Presses
Press release from the issuing company
KBA North America, a leading supplier of sheetfed offset and digital presses based in Williston, VT, has announced the installation of two KBA Rapida 105 41-inch sheetfed presses to Cedar Graphics, a large award-winning general commercial printer located in Hiawatha, Iowa. Both presses were installed in early 2006.
The first press is a KBA Rapida 105 six-color sheetfed press; the second press is a KBA Rapida 105 ten-color five-over-five perfector. The KBA Rapida 105 is the first of all new generation 41" presses configured as a long perfector press in the country. Plus it's the fastest perfector press available on the market.
Sterling first impressions
"Three reasons attracted us to purchase these two KBA presses," says Hassan Igram, CEO of Cedar Graphics, one of the largest printing companies in the U.S. and among the largest sheet-fed printers in the Midwest.
"First and foremost were the features on both presses and the timing of our need for the installation. KBA worked with us to fit our exact needs.
Second, we were impressed with the people at KBA who kept us abreast of all their on going technological advancements.
Third, we were impressed by KBA as a company. Unlike the other press manufacturers, KBA not only had the press configuration we needed, they seem to anticipate what the customer needs and a press operator needs to be successful. KBA is extremely customer-centric!"
The installation of the two presses in early 2006 prepares the firm for its busiest season of the year---June through December - when the firm is producing college and university material and retail calendars. Igram sees the two presses as interchangeable and gives the firm the ability to bounce work back and forth between the two presses as the schedule requires.
Tremendous growth in inline UV plus additional services
A prime growth area for the company is UV printing. "Statistics show a 60% growth rate for hybrid UV printing," he says. "There is a lot of interest in UV among the high-end designers. Our new KBA Rapida 105 six-color gives us the ability to print and UV coat inline. In addition, we produce a lot of book covers and calendars that call for four-over-four or four-over-five inline gloss aqueous or UV. In the past, we've had to outsource these jobs and we've had turnaround issues where we've had to wait three to four days to get the job back plus spend overtime. Now we can produce the entire job under our own roof."
The KBA 41" 10-color long perfector press will have the ability to print five-over-five perfecting jobs as well as straight ten colors due to its automatic convertible system. The ten-color also has a tower coater and dryer, KBA's Densitronic system, and ability to print on both paper and board. To prepare for its installation, Cedar Graphics needed to pour an all new pad for the huge ten-color press and take a wall out in a pressroom that was already 100 ft wide. The new Rapida 105 ten-color perfector will also be equipped with a roll-to-sheet feeder to allow the firm to buy roll paper and cut it according to job specifications.
"The roll-to-sheet feeder will give us both cost savings and time savings," say Igram. "Now we'll only have to stock limited types of paper and the sheeter will cut an infinite number of paper sizes for us. It gives us the ability to buy paper for less cost and automatically inventory."
Difficult test job proves superb on the KBA
"We spent a great deal of time evaluating KBA's perfector system," says Igram. "We narrowed our search to two press manufacturers and put together a comparison chart on each of their perfector presses. KBA graded very high on our comparison chart. KBA impressed with us their ink declutching, their roughened cylinders for perfecting, and the level of satisfaction with current KBA perfector owners. Plus, we took a very difficult test file to KBA's factory showroom in Vermont and it was a huge success. The KBA Rapida long perfector press had the fastest changeover times and running speed in a production environment - it was incredible! That same job could not be accomplished as easily on the other press manufacturer's press."
With the installation of these two new presses, Igram foresees double-digit growth in the future. He's predicting 5% to 10% growth this year; 10% growth next year; and more than 10% growth in the next three years. The firm also wants to further pursue packaging board work, increasing its 15% board market further.
Leader in smart strategic moves
"We've always tried to be the leader in making smart strategic moves," says Igram. "Our industry is capital intensive. We need to have the tools to be the best, to offer the best color consistency, and not be just printers, but offer our clients a marketing solution. We feel the addition of our two KBA presses is inline with those goals."
Cedar Graphics is a full-service printing company staffed by 130 talented professionals. The firm produces a variety of jobs, from multi-color annual reports, variable printing mailer, fine art catalog, or a simple one-color flyer. Since May 1993, the firm has been established in a 90,000 sq ft facility, handling every job aspect from electronic pre-press to printing, finishing and fulfillment.
Well-respected CEO Hassan Igram and the Cedar Graphics team have been the recipients of numerous awards:
- Awarded the sixth annual Howard Hall Excellence in Business Award by the Cedar Rapids Area Chamber of Commerce in 2005
- 5-time winner, Master Printers of America
- Best Workplace in America 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003 & 2004
- Recipient of the Governor's Achievement Award
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