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Chinese Banknote Printer Purchases 12 Speedmaster CD 102 Presses

Press release from the issuing company

07/14/2006 -- China Banknote Printing and Minting Corporation (CBPM), the world's largest banknote printer, recently entered into a contract to purchase 12 Speedmaster CD 102 presses from Heidelberg. This is the largest order during the past four years for Heidelberg China, involving some 60 printing units and six Prinect Image Control color measuring systems. At its six printing plants - located in Beijing, Shanghai, Chengdu, Xi'an, Shijiazhuang and Nanchang - CBPM prints banknotes, invoices and securities. Two Speedmaster CD 102 presses are to go to each printing plant, one of them four-color and the other half six-color. Installation of the first few presses will start late this year and all the presses are scheduled to be in place by spring 2007. "We took a close look at all the various press manufacturers," stated Ao Huicheng, Chairman of the Board of CBPM. "Ultimately, we are delighted to see Heidelberg won the bid. And we are looking forward to a close partnership with the world market leader for sheetfed offset presses," he continued. The highly automated, top-quality Speedmaster CD 102 presses will be supplied with a special rainbow printing device for securities, allowing simultaneous processing of different inks in a single ink fountain. "The high-quality and technically sophisticated processes involved in the printing of banknotes fascinates me," enthused Bernhard Schreier, Chairman of the Board of Heidelberg. "We take great pride in the trust placed in us and are looking forward to a good working relationship that will no doubt involve many more technical developments," he continued. CBPM is under the direct leadership of the state-owned People's Bank of China and employs 30,000 staff at 18 enterprises and a technical center. The company's assets amount to 11.4 billion yuan, equivalent to over 1.4 billion US-Dollars. It specializes in producing Chinese currency and is involved in everything from making paper for banknotes and designing and printing them to minting coins, manufacturing credit cards and refining gold and silver. The growth market of China Heidelberg has been established in China for over 40 years. Direct sales in the Asia-Pacific region, including China, started in 1998. Heidelberg China covers the full solution portfolio - from prepress, press and postpress to consumables, service and training. Over 550 employees provide local support to approximately 9,000 customers and prospective buyers. The company's headquarters in China are situated in Beijing. Four further key centers - Shanghai, Guangzhou, Hong Kong and Shenzhen - boost sales and service operations in the region. In 2006, Heidelberg became the first German equipment manufacturer in the print media industry to set up an assembly plant in China - in the Qingpu industrial zone of Shanghai. This plant produces basic folders and small-format sheetfed offset presses for the Chinese market. China is Asia's most important growth market and the company is committed to expanding its presence in the region. In terms of sales, China is Heidelberg's fourth largest market, behind the USA, Germany and the UK. The demand for print media in China is high. The average Chinese consumer spends the equivalent of ten US-Dollars a year on print products while the average West European spends 400 US-Dollars and the average Japanese consumer 600 US-Dollars. The print media industry in China encompasses over 180,000 businesses and around three million employees. There are more than 2,053 newspapers and in excess of 8,135 magazines.

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