Rochester, N.Y. - Synergie Group plc has invested in the latest KODAK NEXPRESS SX Digital Production Color Press with Fifth Imaging Unit to maximize its creative options and increase capacity. The installation, which includes the KODAK Dimensional Printing System, will mark the company's sixth investment in KODAK NEXPRESS Presses. The press will complete a group of three NEXPRESS machines installed at Synergie's Solihull plant.
Synergie has six sites in the UK-Basingstoke, Solihull, Plymouth, Lymington, Portsmouth and Newbury. The Group's portfolio covers commercial print, packaging and labels, calendar production, branded clothing and gifts, promotional merchandise and direct mail. The installation of the latest press represents part of the company's million-pound investment in digital and finishing equipment in 2010.
Synergie offers an extensive range of services, including graphic design, data processing, brand management and email marketing, as well as a variety of finishing options. The company is one of Kodak's largest European customers, with 16 KODAK DIGIMASTER Digital Production Systems for black and white print.
Digital print and data management is Synergie's core expertise, but the company is also renowned for quality B1 and B2 litho printing. Each of the company's six sites runs a mixture of offset and digital printing. Synergie can produce more than 20m A4 mono and 5m A4 color images per month. The company also holds many accreditations, including FSC, PEFC, ISO 14001, ISO 9001 and ISO 12647-2, the industry standard for color management.
KODAK Technology spurs growth
Investment in the latest Kodak innovations has played a key role in Synergie's expansion: "We started the business with a KODAK NEXPRESS Press in 2005-and if it wasn't for that particular system we would not be where we are today," says Terry Hannam, Managing Director. "The press helped us grow our business. It's a real workhorse and is still going strong, delivering consistently excellent results.
"The creative capabilities of the NEXPRESS Press are unique and help us differentiate ourselves from our competitors. Dimensional Printing lets us create exciting, stand-out products for customers that want to build targeted and sophisticated direct mail campaigns.
"We now have six NEXPRESS Presses on different sites. The latest SX Press with larger sheet size will increase capacity at our Solihull site, enabling us to provide more creative products for our customers nationally."
Synergie's other investments in 2010 include die-cutting and high-precision perforating finishing solutions, as well as large-format equipment. The company is also developing innovative on-demand packaging with unique print and finishing techniques.
Product innovation drives the business
Synergie is committed to adopting the latest advances in print technology and is one of the first in the UK to offer both Dimensional Printing and the 'Easy Mailer' product finishing device, as well as Kodak variable data and web-to-print applications.
The Easy Mailer one-piece envelope solution from Kern is printed digitally with Variable Data Technology from Kodak. It creates a high-value product for marketing and communications agencies-a customized, variable color envelope and content. "The aim is to create high-impact, personalized products that resonate with the recipient," explains Hannam.
"The NEXPRESS Press affords us a competitive edge. With this system, we can meet the highest production standards and develop new applications using its Fifth Imaging Unit. We're striving to achieve the ultimate in 'one-to-one' communications. With Dimensional Printing, for example, we can create striking, personalized 3D direct mail pieces that grab the reader's attention."
Putting the customer in control
Synergie also pays close attention to its workflow applications to improve efficiency and drive production. One of its key offerings is a dedicated web-to-print solution, which enables clients to control the job and expenditure via a web portal branded to their organization's specifications. The software manages the job while offering complete visibility to the client, who can amend designs and check expenses 'on the fly.'
The service also lets clients and Synergie control stock inventory, and allows them to order generic customized items using templates, which can then be personalized.
Building new business with proven and personalized design
In 2006, Synergie acquired Lowe Aston, a 100-year-old calendar manufacturer, and its competitor, Kingston Classic Calendars, a year later. The company plans to bring the past into the future by reproducing original designs using the latest technology. Synergie is busy developing new products to sell in a promotional and marketing forum, including calendars, playing cards, diaries and strut cards for retail merchandising and exhibition stands.
"Personalization is driving the idea," adds Hannam. "We're using KODAK Technology to create personalized, high-quality full-color calendars using past designs. We are producing 'shipping calendars' with a differential-a three-month calendar with one image which helps with planning for transport and shipping companies.
"We're committed to designing unique products that set brand owners apart from their competitors."
Collaborating with key partners
Synergie believes in working closely with its partners, such as St. Ives for web and large-format products like building wraps, Screen for sheetfed and promotional goods, and Easibind for plastics. "Strong partnerships are a real asset because they help maximize business opportunities," concludes Hannam. "Kodak has been our key supplier and partner from the outset. By working with the company we've developed into one of the largest digital print operations in Europe.
"Kodak gives us everything we need-the latest technology, and excellent training and service."