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EskoArtwork introduces Esko Variable Data Printing for packaging and labels

Press release from the issuing company

Gent (Belgium), September 30, 2007 - EskoArtwork, the world leader in packaging preproduction solutions, will introduce its Esko Variable Data Printing module at Labelexpo 07 in hall 5, stand B30. This new software module further expands EskoArtwork's solutions for digital packaging and label printing. In the context of the OEM agreement with HP Indigo this means all HP Indigo industrial presses will be able to take full advantage of Esko Variable Data Printing.
Digital printing in packaging and labels
"With an estimated 30-40% annual growth, digital printing is, by far, the fastest growing market segment within packaging printing. Personalization is appearing in many ways-in marketing programs, limited 'premium' series, and gifts. We're finding suppliers using variable data capabilities as a lever for additional consumable revenue; printers tend to add Variable data printing (VDP) to their business expansion plans. And for product tracking-particularly with pharmaceuticals-barcodes and sequential numbering are required," comments Geert De Proost, EskoArtwork's Director Digital Converting Software product group.
The Esko Variable Data Printing is part of Esko Software Suite 7, and is available as an Adobe Illustrator plug-in within Esko DeskPack, or as an extension of Esko PackEdge and Esko Plato.
Unlike most VDP solutions, the Esko Variable Data Printing module was developed specifically as the first variable data printing solution to fulfill the specific requirements of the labels and packaging markets and is fully integrated with the entire pre-production workflow. Using XML and CSV (comma delimited data file) input, Esko's SmartMarks technology ensures variable elements can easily be tagged and positioned within packaging and labels artwork in absolute and relative positions. Variable bar codes are automatically generated and deliver precise readability. Images and type elements with personalized information can also be automatically placed into defined areas within the packaging design.
EskoArtwork customers Schreiner Group (Oberschleißheim, Germany), Baker Labels (London, UK), Eshuis (Netherlands), and Vox (Portugal) have successfully tested the Esko Variable Data Printing module in conjunction with their HP industrial presses. All preprocess activities and RIP processes are integrated in one workflow that serves conventional as well as digital printing, ensuring flexibility and optimal performance of the entire production facility.
"Jobs with variable data represent a significant field of application for our HP Indigo ws4050 web press. Until now, these types of jobs required an additional, separate production step in the prepress department," explains Markus Petratschek, Prepress Director of Schreiner Group GmbH & Co. KG. "In the VDP module from EskoArtwork, we have found the ideal software. We have been able to establish significant improvements in the creation of variable barcodes and 2D codes. Creating a variable code is now just as easy as creating variable text-there is no need to change the application to do this. Our measurements have confirmed that the code quality is identical to that achieved with static code generation. Furthermore, orders with a million or more variable codes can now be reliably processed."
Thanks to the structure of data preparation, variable print sheets at Schreiner Group, even in the form of PDF files, can be checked immediately as soon as calculation begins. In the interaction between prepress and print production, it is particularly beneficial that the process for computing variable print sheets is removed and takes places as a separate process. That way, neither the employee at the computer nor the printing machine is blocked for calculation of the variable print pages.
"For color matching, we value Esko Kaleidoscope's full support of the HP IndiChrome color space. With VDP, we can use the HP IndiChrome color space for both static elements and variable elements. Because we very often work within the Pantone system, this was an important selection criterion for us," continues Markus Petratschek. He concludes, "Thanks to the reliability and simplicity of EskoArtwork's user interfaces, we can now accurately plan and execute print data preparation."
As a certified systems supplier and development partner, the Schreiner High-Tech Group works in seven specialized business divisions to design intelligent identification and marking solutions for leading companies in various fields, such as automotive, technology, pharmaceuticals and financial services, and for the public authorities. Operating in 33 countries, the group has an annual turnover of approximately 100 million Euros with an export share of almost 50%. The Schreiner Group employs over 600 members of staff across four production sites totalling 40,000 square meters in the Munich area. The group also has a cooperative network with production partners in the USA and China.
"EskoArtwork has pioneered production printing of variable data with the PrintStreamer series of digital front-ends since the mid 90's. We now have transferred our experience and expertise into this new, easy-to-use software", adds Geert De Proost.